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Alicia McLain


Lean Agile Transformation | Executive Coach, Operational Innovations

Location: San Diego



Certified Scrum Professional
Certified ScrumMaster
Certified Scrum Product Owner



Alicia McLain

Principal, Operational Innovations

Alicia is a Lean Agile Transformation | Executive Coach with over 20 years of experience in the technology industry with leadership positions in program management and software development management. Her clients are in the Department of Defense (DoD), Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Medical Device, Medical Research and Manufacturing space. Alicia coaches, trains and transforms mid-size to large companies domestically and internationally. She has been a facilitator of change and transformation to an agile approach using Scrum in a number of companies including: Tapestry Solutions, CareFusion, FNIS, Oracle, Yahoo, EMC, Atlassian and others. Alicia's career passion has been around building high performing teams. As a coach who has led and witnessed the transformation of people, attitudes, hearts and minds towards high performance using Agile practices, she is passionate about being of service to help teams and organizations get there!!

Alicia serves the Agile community as the founder and co-organizer of the Agile Coaching Exchange for Southern California (ACE:SoCal), the first meet up group of its kind established in the United States in partnership with the original group in London. This group is in service to the Agile coaching community from CSM up for members who would like to enhance their skill set, share ideas, and take their coaching careers to the next level.

Alicia began her professional journey 20+ years ago in database design, analysis and support. Over her career she has led and inspired software teams, software departments and program management offices. She has worked in the Agile community since 2006.

    Here is a list of Alicia's main focus areas:
    • Servant leadership in coaching
    • Building psychologically safe organizations
    • Coaching, Mentoring and Training
    • Scrum, XP
    • Continuous improvement
    • Leadership vision for organizational agility

    Below are highlights from Alicia's Agile community contributions:
    • Founder, the Agile Coaching Exchange:
    • Speaker, Scrum Day San Diego 2014, 2016
    • Speaker, Scrum Gathering 2017
    • Speaker, PMI regionally and nationally on using Agile to build high performing teams
    • Agile community servant

    Alicia's professional certifications:
    • ICAgile Certified Professional - Agile Coaching (ICP-ACC)
    • ICAgile Certified Professional - Agile Team Facilitator (ICP-ATF)
    • Certified Scrum Professional (CSP)
    • Certifiied Scrum Master (CSM)
    • Certified Product Owner (CSPO)
    • Project Management Professional (PMP)

Articles I've written

The Emergent Leader and 5 Stages of Group Development
As I have designed training for Agile transformations, I have included elements of leadership and human dynamics theory so that people can see the "whole" as they progress. I now have a list of tools to offer to ScrumMasters, Agile team facilitators, and Agile coaches.  

The Emergent Leader: Planning Poker, a Tool for Building Psychological Safety on Scrum Teams
Psychological safety is an important attribute of high-performing teams. I find that Planning Poker, properly handled, is a great tool for building psychological safety on a team.

The Emergent Leader: Building Psychological Safety for Scrum/Agile Teams
This post explores the concept of building psychological safety in Agile teams.


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