Coaching Program: Level 1
ABOUT THE PROGRAM
This 6-month cohort program will introduce you to our Agile Coaching methodology and teaching process that emphasizes the Thinking, Being, and Doing of Agile Coaching. We leverage research-based models, phenomenological studies, eastern and western philosophies, and tangible practices to immerse you in a deeper way of approaching Agile Coaching, and generate lasting change within yourself and with your clients.
While conducted remotely, this course emphasizes the importance of community in our development. Over these six months, you will work closely with the other members of your cohort to provide feedback on their growth and receive feedback on your own developmental blindspots.
While you will undoubtedly do so, our programs are not solely about “adding tools to your toolbox.” Rather, our intention is for you to define the impact you want to have through your Agile Coaching and build the ability to bring that impact to your work in the world.
Over the course of this program, you will...
Build the ability to more clearly identify and articulate the impact you want to have with your Agile Coaching.
Learn and practice a pragmatic and pluralistic approach to Agile Coaching that will develop your capacity to operate in the complexity of your clients’ world.
Establish new approaches to your Agile Coaching that allow you to more easily appreciate the change, flux, and uncertainty in which you, your teams, and your organization exists.
Practice, revise, and iterate on how this new methodology is best applied in the Agile Coaching work you are doing.
Become an integral member of an Agile Coaching peer community from whom you can elicit feedback and garner support as you continue your developmental learning journey.
With a focus on building Agile Coaching competence, our learning is conducted via the familiar structure of sprints. These rapid iterations will allow you to observe, analyze, and iterate on the knowledge and skills you are developing throughout the program. Over the course of 12 sprints, you will explore various methods, models, theories, and practices that will help you define and enact the impact you want to have through your Agile coaching.
At TBDAgile, we believe there is a shared responsibility in learning. Our part is to provide meaningful content, a safe container, and useful direction along with appropriate levels of resistance for you to push against. Your part is to fully engage, with a beginner's mind, and be open to what is showing up for you, as well as practice in a way that is often going to feel uncomfortable. This is a big part of why we feel it is essential to develop and grow in community. We cannot do this kind of development alone.
Frequently asked questions are answered at the bottom of this page. Feel free to contact us with any additional questions. Below is a detailed summary of what you will learn in Level 1.
ENTERING & EMERGING THE SYSTEM
INDIVIDUALS & INTERACTIONS
RESPONDING TO CHANGE
INTEGRATION & CLOSING
Sprint 1: Start Close In
In this initial sprint, we will focus on starting well. To do so, we will spin up our learning community and introduce the core methodology and models of TBDAgile and this Advanced Agile Coaching Program. Our focus will be on charting our collective path through the next six months.
Sprint 2: Defining your Agile Coaching Stance
The second sprint will introduce the concepts of stance and vocation and how they are applied to the TBDAgile Coaching approach. You will learn structures and practices to help develop and refine your stance as an Agile Coach. At the end of this sprint, you will have a created, or revised, your Agile Coaching stance.
Sprint 3: Designing Intentional Relationships
This sprint offers techniques to help you create transparent and collaborative relationships with those you coach. This includes a deep dive into social contracting and creating intentional coaching relationships with both teams and managers. As with all sprint goals in this program, you will be taking your learning back to your day-to-day work. Here, you will practice by contracting with your current teams, managers, and leaders.
Sprint 4: Powerful Requests and Conversations for Action
Our ability to communicate effectively is an essential element to the success of Agile Coaching. Yet, these skills can be extremely challenging to develop. In these two weeks, we will explore a framework that proposes a way to to develop the skills we need to have productive conversations. You will also learn ways to create collaborative working relationships where people co-create the culture of their organization through structured conversations. As with all skills, practice is necessary to improve our ability. This sprint will invite you to engage in your own practice and reflect on the efficacy of your conversations.
Sprint 5: Giving and Receiving Useful Feedback
Research shows us that feedback is a key to keeping organizations healthy and thriving. We see frequent requests in organizations to receive more regular and useful feedback. Giving and receiving feedback is challenging, which keeps us from doing it as often as we want to. In this sprint, we will explore the physiological impact that giving and receiving feedback has on our bodies. With that understanding in place, you will learn and practice methods for giving various types of feedback and discuss the similarities and differences in strategies for giving feedback to team members and managers.
Sprint 6: Facilitating with Neutrality and Curiosity
Together with dialogue, facilitation has the ability to solve the vast majority of the issues we are facing in our organizations. To amp up this competency, we will establish a nuanced and useful definition of neutrality and curiosity as it applies to your facilitation stance. You will leverage that knowledge in your practice as you guide groups towards participatory decision making. Finally, you will understand what technique to use when the stakes are low, and how to keep groups focused and collaborating when the stakes are high.
Sprint 7: Structures for Enabling Innovation
One of the enviable outcomes of an effective agile adoption is the ability to respond to the emerging demands of a complex market in a predictable cadence. This kind of innovation requires structure, applied in a delicate, yet robust, manner. This sprint focuses on how you can work with business leaders, product teams, and customers to help them create innovative solutions for whatever they are creating. Practice will involve various product development strategies and structures that you can bring to your product teams immediately.
Sprint 8: Working in Complexity
Organizations are dealing with ever-increasing levels of volatility and uncertainty. As Agile Coaches, we must be able to understand the impact complexity has on individuals, teams, and systems. To increase that understanding, you will learn about complexity science, the Cynefin framework, and the implications networked human systems have on organizations. You will also discuss and practice how to provide value as an Agile Coach when there is no “right answer” to the questions arising.
Sprint 9: Facing Change with Edge Theory
In this sprint, you will begin by exploring various organizational change and adult developmental models to help create a practice theory for working with change in your organizations and teams. This work will look to spiral dynamics, deliberately developmental organizations, and systemic constellations. You will use this foundation to begin to experience and nurture the change that wants to happen in your organization.
Sprint 10: (Re)Defining your Agile Coaching Stance
After 5 months of learning and practice, we take another look at your agile coaching stance. You will explore what blindspots you have been brought into the light. You will explore and expand your ability to be self-correcting and self-generating. This will provide you with practices to continue to use long after this program ends.
Sprint 11: Creating a Path of Development
The Advanced Agile Coaching Program is intended to offer you ideas and practices to challenge the way you think and act as an Agile Coach. Your development doesn’t stop after the last session of this program. This sprint will focus on how you will continue your developmental path after our final sprint together. You will create a plan and define an accountability partner to help you reach your desired outcomes.
Sprint 12: Closing the System
To close Level 1, we will discuss the systemic implications and importance that healthy closings have and the common symptoms in organizations when this principle is not honored. The remainder of our time will be spent closing our learning system to prepare you for whatever is next on your path.
IS THIS PROGRAM FOR BEGINNER COACHES OR EXPERIENCED COACHES?
TBDAgile's Advanced Agile Coaching Program offers a methodology that demands a lot from you, and if fully engaged with, will provide a path of development that will allow you to excel in your Agile coaching. While new coaches can start their career by learning to practice an advanced and comprehensive coaching approach, we believe this program is most beneficial for coaches with at least 6 months of Agile Coaching experience. Your unique circumstances will guide you in this decision, and we are happy to discuss whether this is a fit for you.
As you look through the program schedule for Level 1, you will undoubtedly see topics that you have already covered. Yes! Of course you will. While it’s true that some of the topics are the same or similar to what you were introduced to in an introduction to Agile coaching skills (such as the ACI Bootcamp), the topics covered are quite vast. We tend to consider that each topic is a mile deep, and you may have touched on the first half inch during a Bootcamp. So, as you interact with the material, you will hear new parts that you haven’t heard before - sometimes because they weren’t taught, and sometimes because you simply didn’t hear it, often because it wasn’t important or relevant to you at the time. This is the nature of learning and development. In the bootcamp you are introduced to many of the things you need to explore and master to be effective in your Agile coaching. In the AACP, you begin to really create a practice in which you move farther along your path of mastery. And, indeed, there will also be lots of new material. We also believe that the way in which you are incorporating and learning is different, and that itself will produce different results.
While there is no prerequisite for Level 1, everyone must apply and be accepted into the program to participate. An application can be found here.
In the coming months, we will begin offering an Agile Coaching Bootcamp which will be intended for people who are brand new to the Agile Coaching profession. If you are just starting your agile journey and are interested in learning more, please sign up for our mailing list at the bottom of this page to receive updates about this and other upcoming courses.
WHAT IS THE STRUCTURE OF LEVEL 1?
Level 1 is a six-month online program. The learning will be structured into twelve 2-week sprints, each composed of a 3-hour teaching session, peer group (pod) calls, practices, and homework in between each session. For exact dates of our upcoming program, please visit our schedule page.
Each teaching session will introduce theories and practices and provide demonstration and discussion. Sessions are recorded so that you can catch up if you need to miss a session or if you just want to review the demos to deepen your learning. Participants receive two 50-minute private coaching sessions with course faculty to support integration and application.
WHAT IS THE COST OF LEVEL 1?
The tuition for Level 1 is $2,499 USD. This fee includes tuition for the course plus two 50-minute coaching sessions with course faculty to support integration and application. Additional coaching sessions with faculty are available for an additional fee. Contact your course faculty directly if you are interested.
WHEN DOES THE NEXT LEVEL 1 COHORT START?
Please look at the schedule page on this website to find out the application deadline for the next cohort as well as all session dates. In general, we launch a new Level 1 cohort approximately twice a year about every 4-6 months.
WHAT TIME OF DAY ARE THE SESSIONS HELD?
The teaching sessions will be held at 9:00a-12:00p Pacific time. Once cohorts are fully registered, the time of these calls may be negotiated depending on the geography of the cohort. Pod calls and other, between session work will be scheduled individually and collaboratively by pod members. Your coaching sessions with faculty will be scheduled by you in a time available for you and the faculty.
HOW LARGE ARE THE COHORTS?
The cohorts are, at most, 24 people. In addition to the learning that will occur in the whole group and on your own in your day to day work, you will be a member of a learning group (we call it a pod) composed of you and three others. Much of the between-session learning will occur via conversations and interaction with your pod and the practices you will use in your day-to-day work.
WHO TEACHES THE LEVEL 1 COURSES?
The faculty for all courses will be Katrina Ferguson & Tim Cunnane, the creators of TBDAgile.
Katrina began her journey into Agile as a Project Manager in a failing product, in 2010. Agile was brought in to save the day, and Kat was hooked within hours of beginning her CSM training. She went on to train several hundred people in that organization before moving on to the Agile consulting world. She became known as a go-to person for large transformations, and worked with teams at a number of top ten Fortune 100 companies. In 2015, Katrina studied Integral Coaching and is now an ICF certified coach. She has spent 5 years studying Systemic Coaching and Constellations, and is 5 years into a 10 year unfoldment practice program with Aletheia Academy. Katrina spent 4 years teaching with Agile Coaching Institute, where she taught many hundreds of people around the world, and was the lead faculty and instructional designer for several years. Kat’s background is diverse, and as well as the teaching and Agile experience mentioned, includes years in deregulated electricity, a successful startup that created a new industry, 2 university degrees, 25 years as a glass artist, and 30+ years as a single parent.
Tim has been an Agile Coach & Consultant since 2010. He has led numerous large-scale transformations in organizations ranging from small startups to Fortune 100 enterprises. In addition to his work as an Agile Coach, Tim is an ICF certified coach, a trained facilitator, and has held the positions of senior faculty member and instructional designer at the Agile Coaching Institute. Prior to his roles in the agile space, Tim has been a touring musician, manager for the largest college bookstore in the United States, and a race car driver all before turning 21. Since then, he has had his music compositions featured at numerous new music festivals, helped create the first technology focused senior center in the world, and co-created a remote learning curriculum for AARP to reduce social isolation in low-income older adult populations. He is a certified Integral Coach and serves as a coach to many coaches and leaders.
Together, they launched TBDAgile in 2020 as a platform for offering their developmental methodology and practices to Agile Coaches.
WHAT IS THE TIME COMMITMENT OF LEVEL 1?
The typical time commitment is ~4-8 hours per week during the duration of the course. The bulk of these hours will be spent practicing what you are learning in your day-to-day job and life. Remaining time is spent participating in the online sessions, practicing with your pod, and studying materials.
WHAT IF I NEED TO MISS A SESSION?
We ask that you do your best to attend each session. However, we understand that life commitments sometimes overlap, meaning you will miss a live session. All sessions are video recorded. If you can’t attend in-person, you can catch up on your own time by watching the video.
WHEN WILL I BE ABLE TO START APPLYING THIS APPROACH WITH MY AGILE COACHING CLIENTS?
In Level 1, everything presented in the program will be immediately applicable to your Agile Coaching work. In fact, this real-world practice is a distinct feature of our cohort-based training methodology. We believe that our development as Agile Coaches doesn’t happen in the vacuum of the classroom alone. In addition to the new theories and methodologies you are taught, you need to create practices to truly shift your stance. This program will provide practices for you to experiment with while receiving feedback and support from your peers and the course faculty.
WHAT’S NEXT AFTER LEVEL 1?
After completion of Level 1, the next step is to continue to practice what you have worked to build in the program. Helping structure this process will be the Agile Coaching development plan you will create and an accountability partner you will define in Sprint 11.
When the time is right, you can evaluate the next level of our Advanced Agile Coaching Program. In Level 2, you will go deeper into the TBDAgile Coaching approach, study additional models, and incorporate new practices to continue to develop your Agile Coaching.
DO YOU OFFER CERTIFICATION?
Yes, we currently offer a single certification. Becoming a Certified TBDAgile Coach requires completion of the Level 1 and Level 2 programs plus completion of the certification process.
At TBDAgile, the aim of certification is to bring an extra level of scrutiny and feedback to your Agile Coaching to enable you to improve the impact of your coaching. Certification requires completion of three case studies which are primarily composed of video recordings of actual coaching, facilitation, and mentoring practices that you will review and discuss with faculty.
We want to contribute meaningfully to the rigor of Agile Coaching as a profession, and take certification seriously. Our intention is to bring your own awareness to the learning that is essential for you to continue developing and finding your vocation and therefore do not certify solely based on attendance.
Please contact us with any questions about TBDAgile or the Advanced Agile Coaching Program.