Pre-conceptions of Scrum Coaching Retreats

Are you new to Scrum Coaching Retreats? Wondering what exactly you’re signing up for? I was in that position last year, and I’d like to share my observations.

It is not a conference, as there are no sessions or speakers. It is Agile Coaches working in Scrum teams, diving deep into topics that they are interested in.
– Mark Summers, Scrum Coaching Retreats

After having served for many years as a ScrumMaster and team-level coach, I wanted to stretch myself a bit and discover what it means to be a coach. I’d attended a few local gatherings and Open Space events, but the notion of a Coaching Retreat captured my interest big time. The idea of surrounding myself with others who were (or aspired to become) coaches sounded like an opportunity that I simply had to have.

I signed up for the SCR in Seattle 2015 and began researching what I could from previous retreats. I became active in the google group set up for our event and began asking questions, and I discovered that most others on the guest list were asking the same questions as me.

  • Do you have to be a coach to attend?
  • Will this event teach you how to become a coach (or get certified)?
  • Is it a passive experience where you show to listen to experts?

The answer to each of these three questions was “no”. Instead, I learned that each attendee would be expected to join a team to work on a project that will give value back to ALL attendees and to the greater Scrum community worldwide.

Cut to the chase: I went and had a blast. I’d never had such an effective three days with other practitioners, and the network I’d built was truly amazing! I refer regularly to the work that we did together – a terrific example of what a new team could accomplish inside a mini-scrum framework. AND the project had lasting benefits. I’ve used my team’s Coaching Dojo results (as well as the outputs from other teams) in both my previous engagement and my current workplace.

You can find more info related to Scrum Coaching Retreats on the Scrum Alliance’s website at scrumalliance.org/courses-events/events/coaches-retreats

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