I’ve been seeing/hearing a few posts/emails/discussion on which is better an Agile Trainer or an Agile Coach. I haven’t done a pet peeves post in a while but this one might be close – more of a rant post. Agile Trainer vs Agile coach is a complete waste of time topic.
First, let’s make align on what I consider within these terms: Training vs Coaching
Training: Transferring content knowledge from one person to others (this is successfully done in ways beyond simply telling)
Coaching: Unlocking and exploring knowledge from within others
These are my super simple definitions. Now notice I used the skill “ing” version not the role version. I truly believe that we have overloaded the titles Agile Trainer and Agile Coach. I know Agile Trainers that are amazing at training and coaching skills. I know Agile Coaches that are amazing at training and coaching skills. I know Agile Trainers that never use coaching. I know Agile Coaches that never use training. I know Agile Trainers that in my opinion don’t really train but consult/tell. I know Agile Coaches that in my opinion don’t really coach but consult/tell.
I think what bothers me most in this “vs” equation is that there is an implication one skill is more important. I just don’t believe that. I think any leader should know how to both train and how to coach. Both of these skills are essential and valuable. Regardless of what a person might refer to themselves as – are they a leader? That’s who I want helping me…someone who can both train and coach.
What comes to mind for you with this question?