So one of the positive attributes I feel I’ve retained from my Project Management days is an instinct to capture information.
With how thick and fast information is thrown at us these days (certainly in my current career path) I always remind myself of the need to capture information that is ‘just enough’ or ‘barely sufficient’ to avoid waste, which is a reflection in myself of what I coach to people and teams.
With that in mind then, I have played an active role in a big Agile transformation for the past 10 months. I thought it would be a good idea to capture and categorise all the coaching activities I have led/facilitated/played a part in this period.
To keep it just enough I would jot down for the last 5 minutes of each day what activities I had been involved in each day as you can see below:
Because in the same way I encourage teams to capture their data so they can analyse it and identify what it tells them, I thought this would really help me take a step back and do the same activity personally.
Of course my analysis will be at a different level. My focus on using this is to take a step back and ask myself questions like:
- So what Activity categories were popular/needed/frequently used?
- How does the spread of Activity categories here differ to other Agile transformations? Do I feel there are similarities or was this one quite different?
- Have I developed my own skills/continuously improved in all of the different Activity categories?
- The Activity categories that are rarely used – is this because they weren’t needed, should have been given more focus or are areas that I don’t naturally lean towards as a coach?
For transparency, here’s a snapshot of the coaching categories that I did a simple visualisation of (yes go on…marvel at the spreadsheet beauty) :
The point here is no matter how much experience you’ve had in any one topic/area of work (and even if you call yourself a guru, ninja, thought leader, aficionado etc) I don’t believe anyone has hit a stage where they can’t look to improve/continuously learn.
As a Lean/Agile Coach (I know I need a catchier title ) who looks to transfer this continuous improvement mindset to people all the time it would be pretty hypocritical if I didn’t adopt the same viewpoint myself. I would either be naive or complacent.
So…in the same way that Personal Kanban has become popular for individuals to focus on flowing their own work, I think this personal reflective activity should be too as it’s equally as valuable. As I seem to be writing catchy titles for fun in this post, maybe #personaldatadrivenretrospectives ? Right… I’m off to get a job in Marketing!