Fortunately, there is always a balance in the universe. The people that balance out the power oriented architects are some of the true leaders in society, past and present. These are the people that live a value system intrinsically and that just becomes pervasive in the teams or groups with whom they work. They lead and they coach, they teach and are taught. After all, building software is a social exercise more than a technical exercise.
Here are some people that I think would have been fantastic agile coaches (in no particular order).
- Mahatma Ghandi stopped ethnic violence between Hindus and Muslims by believing in the equality of everyone. There is one quote of his that stays with me when designing software: “The only solution is that which is just for everyone”. Ok, I may have got the exact wording wrong, but you know what I mean.
- Bruce Lee was a man that sought perfection through serious introspection. He found meaning through the martial arts and when he found it, he realized it was not about the power but the subtleties of understanding yourself. Again, something from Bruce Lee that helps me find build simpler solutions: “In building a statue, a sculptor doesn’t keep adding clay to his subject. Actually, he keeps chiselling away at the unessentials until the truth of its creation is revealed without obstructions”
- Nelson Mandela forgave those that incarcerated him, completely and selflessly. And in doing that, he taught 45 million people that change is possible. He has an amazing ability to make everyone feel at ease with his humility. There is no private face nor public face. There is just him. So, for the toughest bits in every design, I turn to this great man: “It always seems impossible until its done.“
Happy 90th Birthday, Madiba!
I just wish you could code as well as you coach 🙂