The situation is volatile, uncertain, complex, ambiguous, overwhelming (VUCA”O”). We have an immediate, mission critical challenge to tackle. We need team alignment, and as leader I am tempted to exercise strong command — I am thinking “Now’s not the time for democracy.” Afterall, when push comes to shove, a leader has to do what’s right, right?

Maybe, maybe not. Command perhaps yes, but control, probably not. It’s all about the context. Commanding can be a leadership style, but commanding only in the leader’s context is control. If it is in the team’s context, i.e. there is alignment and shared ownership…


How do we lead with inspiration and purpose? It’s a good question and every leader’s struggle.

You want your people to share your vision and enthusiasm of pursuing a common goal, and you wish them to each own that purpose so that you don’t have to keep on telling them what to do.

It’s a question that is closely tied with the endeavour to build self-organized, autonomous teams.

Instructive leadership has its limits, but it is after all practical. Don’t we all have experiences where we try motivating and inspiring our people by sharing the vision and purpose of…

Dear Eli, Frankie and team, thanks for the follow-up questions to our group coaching session on “Aristotle’s Influence Model”. What is the difference between influencing and manipulation? How do we influence without sounding like we’re being manipulative? Very valid questions.

Dear Aurel, Bao, Claudio and others, thanks for responding to my “Authentic Conversations and the Art of Feedbacking” video post and posing the essential, genesis question “What is an authentic conversation?”

If I give you the answer it’s no longer authentic — real and true to you — so you’re going to have to figure it out on your own. Jk, rhetoric aside, I’d be happy to share my thoughts.

There was also a related question, “Are directional talks wrong entirely?” Let me combine the answers.

The measurement is trust. An authentic conversation is a mutual attempt to be honest…


Why is it so hard to have an authentic conversation? The type of conversation that you feel safe, comfortable, connected with the other person and even if it’s a tough topic, there’s mutual respect and willingness to come to a shared understanding. Either it is in a personal or business situation, wouldn’t it be great if every conversation can be deeply engaging and meaningful like this…

Usually there’s power at play in uncomfortable conversations. If you’re the initiator of the conversation, check-in with yourself if the conversation is becoming directional talk, rather than a dialogue. Obviously you’ll want to…

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Watch the Design Thinking primer

Take the Scrum Crash Course

Practice Rapid Design Thinking


Hi, I’m Coach Takeshi. As some of you may have already read from my 2018 viral article, I am a big fan of the hybrid practice of Design Thinking plus Agile Scrum. In this video I’d like to explain why.

In doing so, first, I’d like to take us back to remind ourselves why we do agile.

1911, Taylorism and the history changing success of the Ford Model T factory. Scientific Management all the way to Waterfall project management — they…

Stuck with a customer challenge? No problem, let’s visualize it.

Sharing my Rapid Design Thinking Template that I frequently use in individual and team coaching sessions.

Rapidly going through the sequence of empathizing with the customer, defining the problem and challenge, ideating and creating building blocks for potential solutions, all on a one page visual; it’s an exhilarating experience that often takes less than 30 minutes and fits in within a one hour coaching session. And it’s not unusual that breakthrough solutions are born on the spot.

Here’s an example:

This is a one hour fifty minute condensed version of my otherwise one day Scrum Crash Course that I give to leaders and teams that are about to embark on a Scrum product development journey. Although it is hyper condensed, no corners are cut short as I insist: when we do Scrum, we do proper Scrum.

Download the workbook | Watch on YouTube


Welcome to my Scrum Crash Course. Hi, I’m Coach Takeshi. If we’re going to do Scrum, let’s do Scrum properly. No “scrummy”, or “pick and chose” scrum, ok? …

Practicing Empiricism in Learning Interventions

As learning professionals, we coach, train, consult and facilitate our client teams to measure their activities and create feedback loops so that they can adapt and iterate to learn. We call it empiricism or evidenced based management.

It would be hypocrisy if we coaches, trainers, consultants don’t uphold ourselves to the same standards of inspection: we are accountable for measuring the efficacy of the learning interventions we provide.

The following are two frameworks that we use to help ourselves continuously learn from the quality and impact of our work at Agile Organization Development.

Phillips ROI Model

The Phillips ROI model is an extension…

Takeshi Yoshida

Chief Coach — I lead a tribe of ICF + Agile hybrid coaches for organizational change, agile & digital transformation, innovation program success

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