obstacle_approachToday, as I already announced in “Coaching Session – Real Questions” post, I will continue with few more posts to help you to generate options inside your team/individual as the coach/scrum master. In this post the technique/approach is “Obstacle Approach”.

Obstacle Approach

This approach starts with the barriers the team/individual has come up against.

  • “What is stopping you from reaching your objective?”
  • “What do you need that you don’t have to reach this goal? What do you need that you don’t have to finish this project?”
  • “You’ve mentioned money several times as an obstacle. If you had all the money you needed, then what would you do?”
  • “I’ve heard you say twice that you don’t have the time to take this on. Let’s look at that obstacle: give me five options for how you could find the time.” [See the five Options technique post here]
  • “How could you change your objectives or timetable to make this goal achievable?”
  • “What resources could you tap into to overcome this obstacle?”
  • “Who do you know that could help you with this?”
  • “How have you overcome obstacles like this in similar situations in the past?”

Remember: Sometimes after all this, the person will go back and choose the very first option they voiced. That is not a failure! The value of going through the whole process is now they really believe it is the best option, and so it is more likely to get done.

Please, feel free to share your feedback and your comments.

Thank you,



About the author

Omar is an agile practitioner and lover. Certified Scrum master. Agile Coach & Agile Leader. He believes it is important to continually be learning and growing. His dream is to be a lifelong learner; growing each day. He is also passionate about leadership development and seeing people reach their full potential. He is also a good husband & father (his wife says that time to times). He has a wonderful wife and 2 fantastic kids. In his free time, if he does not have any plan ahead, he tries to apply agile methodologies at the family level :). He enjoys a lot to travel with his family and discovers new places for them.