Management Fix: Hire Scrum Master(s)

A MngtFix is an actionable solution for a problem with pros and cons to be evaluated by a human manager. Every other week we share a little bit of our knowledge base on social media and our newsletter. This week’s MngtFix is…

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Description

This week’s “Hire ScrumMaster(s)” is typically forgotten.
By definition, a scrum master is a facilitator for an agile development team. Scrum is a methodology that allows a team to self-organize and make changes quickly, in accordance with agile principles. The scrum master manages the process for how information is exchanged.

Although the scrum analogy was first applied to manufacturing in a paper by Hirotaka Takeuchi and Ikujiro Nonaka, the approach is often used in agile software development and other types of project management. In rugby, opposing teams huddle together during a scrum to restart the game. In product development, team members huddle together each morning for a stand-up meeting where they review progress and essentially restart the project. During the daily meetings, which are sometimes called “scrums,” the scrum master asks the team members these three questions:

1. What did you do yesterday?
2. What will you do today?
3. Are there any impediments in your way?

Although the title of scrum master sounds powerful, the scrum master is not the project leader and is not held accountable for outcomes. The team as a whole is responsible for outcomes.

That does not mean that the job is easy, however. The scrum master is responsible for:

1. Helping the team to reach consensus for what can be achieved during a specific period of time.
2. Helping the team to reach consensus during the daily scrum.
3. Helping the team to stay focused and follow the agreed-upon rules for daily scrums.
4. Removing obstacles that are impeding the team’s progress.
5. Protecting the team from outside distractions.
(Thanks to https://whatis.techtarget.com/definition/scrum-master)

Implementing Scrum without having a Scrum Master is like having a Project without a Project Manager. They are the main facilitators to a successful implementation.

Known Associates

This MngtFix has been mentioned in relation to a number of MngtBugs such as…
“Undefined Responsibilities”,
“Lack of Roles and Ownership Definition”,
“Lack of Product Backlog”,
“Lack of Daily Stand-Ups”,
“Lack of Sprint Retrospective Meetings”,
and of course “Lack of Scrum Master”!

Call to action

What about you? What do you want more or less of on medium post?
Do you have other suggestions?

I would love to know more about your feedback and stories so that we can learn, share and grow together!

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Have a nice week and remember…
Human Managers should strive to be humans while managing and be managed as humans!

Eduardo Espinheira is a Consultant, Facilitator, Manager, Public Speaker, Creator of the Management Bugs&Fixes and the Machiavellian PM Stories