- Play Another Role in the Scrum Framework
- Coach Team on Technical Practices
- Prepare Strategy With the Team to Meet the Goal.
- Gain More In-Depth Knowledge of Business
- Participate as a Peer Team Member in Retrospective
- Be a Good Manager
- Educate Teams on Dependencies Vs. Impediments
Scrum Master is the name given to one of the very crucial roles of the project management framework. A scrum master has duties that are very different from a product owner and a development team. The scrum master is responsible for organizing the team and making sure that deadlines are met, and the product is delivered to the client on time. All the while, the scrum master has to make sure that the correct framework is followed. Is being a scrum master an easy job? Definitely not! Is it possible for one to become a great scrum master? Absolutely!
Here are a few practices that can help you become a great scrum master:
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Play Another Role in the Scrum Framework
We learn more by doing. Think of a product owner’s role if it makes sense or works as a developer/tester/business analyst within the development team. After all, the scrum master is just a role within the scrum framework and not a title within the organization. The product owner role is challenging because you may have to deal with the stakeholders’ conflicting needs and manage product backlog effectively to maximize value.
Coach Team on Technical Practices
You may and may not know these technical practices, but you can’t run away from your responsibilities. It is about practices, not coding, so not necessary you know coding or code to demonstrate. Still, you must know why these practices are needed and the advantages and disadvantages of these practices to be capable enough to educate your team. If you don’t know where you can start,join us at Aleph technologies to become certified. Aleph has been specially designed for the scrum masters, product owners, agile coaches, and managers to learn enough to coach.
Prepare Strategy With the Team to Meet the Goal.
Self-organization is good, but that doesn’t prevent you from working with the development team. It is true that the development team is self-organized and decides how to meet the sprint goal, but at the same time, you are responsible that the team has understood the purpose of the sprint goal and coming up with a plan that helps the team. Attending daily Scrum gives you how the team is acting when they discover more information and impact the same while preparing their daily plan.
Gain More In-Depth Knowledge of Business
It is not about guiding the product owner but using the same language that the business understands. Having in-depth experience in insurance, healthcare, and automotive domains enables you to have more in-depth conversations using real examples. It is not necessary to have prior knowledge, but your willingness to learn domain broadly helps.
Participate as a Peer Team Member in Retrospective
The retrospective’s purpose is misunderstood by many teams where the scrum master only acts as a facilitator and doesn’t participate as a team member. It is a retrospective for the scrum team, not just for the development team. We review people’s collaborations, the relationship among team members, processes, practices, and tools, including scrum processes for which scrum master is accountable. Be a peer team member to see what’s not working or what’s working to improve by getting feedback.
Be a Good Manager
The product owner owns the product backlog, release, and stakeholder management. The development team owns quality and delivery. Similarly, the scrum master owns processes and manages impediments, so be good at managing the same as a leader. Good managers are on top of things that they care about and enable transparency. Teams should know what’s going on with reported impediments and what processes to follow. Managing them is not easy and sometimes needed to make tough decisions when teams break their agreed processes or impediments are not getting resolved. You can’t use a self-organized team definition to defend for not doing what you are supposed to do.
Educate Teams on Dependencies Vs. Impediments
Dependencies and impediments are two different things. Teams manage dependencies as they have technical dependencies on other teams and know what these dependencies are. Like, team A developing shopping carts and have dependencies on Team B (developing payment methods) to integrate with, they have to coordinate themselves. Impediments are process knowledge such as conducting useful backlog refinement or estimate stories, learning about technical practices like CI/CD, TDD, or BDD, or not sure how to form a cross-functional team.
If you’re looking to become a great scrum master, the tips mentioned above that greatly help you in this endeavor. Remember, being a scrum master is not about being the boss; it’s about being a leader, motivating your team, protecting them from unnecessary stress, and, above all, ensuring that they work to the best of their abilities at all times.
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Written by: Faith Olopade
Digital Marketing Analyst @ The International Institute of Digital Marketing