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Kulsoom Pervez: The Struggle for Team Unity, And How To Recognize Our Limits As Scrum Masters

In this episode, Kulsoom shares her experience with a group of skilled individuals who struggled to function as a team. As their Scrum Master, she noticed a lack of accountability and ownership, issues with completing sprint stories, and a blame culture during retrospectives. The team, marred by tension between developers and QA, created an unhealthy environment. Despite her efforts to revitalize retrospectives and foster change, progress was slow and draining. Eventually, Kulsoom and several team members left the company, leading her to understand the limits of her influence and the importance of self-care and mental health for Scrum Masters and Agile Coaches.

Featured Book Of The Week: Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes are High by Grenny et al.

Kulsoom delves into how the book “Crucial Conversations” profoundly influenced her role as a Scrum Master. She emphasizes the book’s impact in shaping her approach to crucial conversations, vital for anyone in a change agent role like hers. Highlighting the importance of courage and skill, Kulsoom discusses the book’s framework for managing critical discussions effectively. She underscores how having a structured approach to conversations is essential for effective communication and problem-solving in agile environments.

Transform Your Agile Teams with Hard-Earned Lessons from Super-Experienced Scrum Masters

Do you wish you had decades of experience? Learn from the Best Scrum Masters In The World, Today! The Tips from the Trenches – Scrum Master edition audiobook includes hours of audio interviews with SM’s that have decades of experience: from Mike Cohn to Linda Rising, Christopher Avery, and many more. Super-experienced Scrum Masters share their hard-earned lessons with you. Learn those today, make your teams awesome!

About Kulsoom Pervez

Kulsoom is passionate about constructing sustainable, resilient, and high-performing teams, consistently delivering value to customers through the transformative power of Agility. She embodies a leadership style that inspires, empowers, and fosters the growth of her colleagues. Kulsoom enjoys reading and has also dabbled in blogging.

You can link with Kulsoom Pervez on LinkedIn.

Isshai Kamara: Collaboration as a Cure, Helping Agile Teams Overcome The Missing Product Owner Anti-Pattern

In this segment, Isshai discusses challenges faced by her two mobile teams lacking Product Owners (POs). This led to uncertainty about requirements and a sparse backlog. Instead of hiring new POs, Isshai initiated collaboration with existing POs from other teams. She shares tips like integrating tech leads with other POs, setting up meetings for better communication, and considering tech leads as potential POs. Isshai emphasizes transparency about these issues with her teams and stresses the importance of showing them that there is ongoing work and focus on detailing tasks, marking a significant culture shift within the organization.

Featured Book of the Week: Project To Product by Mik Kersten

In this segment, Isshai discusses the transformative impact of Project To Product by Mik Kersten on her journey from a project manager to a more product-focused person. She credits the book for enhancing her understanding of team metrics and providing deeper insights into software development processes. Emphasizing the importance of motivated teams, the book also introduces a unique tool developed by the author, designed specifically for teams concentrating on product development. This tool has been instrumental in Isshai’s ability to effectively guide her development teams.

Transform Your Agile Teams with Hard-Earned Lessons from Super-Experienced Scrum Masters

Do you wish you had decades of experience? Learn from the Best Scrum Masters In The World, Today! The Tips from the Trenches – Scrum Master edition audiobook includes hours of audio interviews with SM’s that have decades of experience: from Mike Cohn to Linda Rising, Christopher Avery, and many more. Super-experienced Scrum Masters share their hard-earned lessons with you. Learn those today, make your teams awesome!

About Isshai Kamara

Isshai Kamara is a seasoned IT professional with over 12 years of experience, specializing in Agile delivery roles and Scrum implementation. Initially a Technologist, he later transitioned into Project and Engineering Management. With 8 years in Agile delivery, Isshai has become an advocate for IT careers, aiding professionals in transitions and conducting bootcamps for tech roles. His extensive experience in Agile methodologies and commitment to IT career development make him a distinguished figure in the tech community.

You can link with Isshai Kamara on LinkedIn and connect with Isshai Kamara on Instagram.

Drew Craig: Unravelling an Agile Team’s Struggle with Overcommitment, And The Inevitable Consequences

In this episode, Drew delves into the common pitfall of teams overloading their backlog, leading to failed sprints and destroyed team morale. The challenge lies in helping teams realize the importance of realistic commitments. Drew suggests analyzing data, considering historical averages, and aligning discussions with product goals and roadmaps. Addressing the fear of reducing commitments due to leadership pressure, he emphasizes the need to collaborate with leadership and focus on data-driven decision-making.

Featured Book Of The Week: Multipliers, by Liz Wiseman

In this episode, Drew shares pivotal books shaping his career as a Scrum Master. “Drive” by Dan Pink offers clarity with easy-to-understand insights about motivation, grounding practitioners in their roles. Drew appreciates its ability to simplify complex concepts. “Multipliers” by Liz Wiseman provides insights on strengthening teams and shifting from doing to enabling. Drew’s takeaway involves pondering, “How can I be a multiplier?”

Transform Your Agile Teams with Hard-Earned Lessons from Super-Experienced Scrum Masters

Do you wish you had decades of experience? Learn from the Best Scrum Masters In The World, Today! The Tips from the Trenches – Scrum Master edition audiobook includes hours of audio interviews with SM’s that have decades of experience: from Mike Cohn to Linda Rising, Christopher Avery, and many more. Super-experienced Scrum Masters share their hard-earned lessons with you. Learn those today, make your teams awesome!

About Drew Craig

Drew calls himself an Agile Coach for humans; inspiring growth for individuals, teams, and systems to be better together. In all of his roles, the connection has been the people. He is passionate about establishing sustainable and simple processes, techniques, or insights as mechanisms toward self-sufficient and empowered systems.

You can link with Drew Craig on LinkedIn and connect with Drew Craig on Twitter.

Nimi Bello: From Conflict to Growth, Lessons in Coaching as a Scrum Master, Even When Stakes are High!

In the episode, Nimi talks about a challenging experience where a high-stakes project faced self-destruction due to a lack of psychological safety. The dominant engineering manager stifled team communication, leading to disengagement and reduced collaboration. Struggling as a Scrum Master, Nimi took the initiative to have a difficult conversation with the manager, emphasizing the team’s perspective. By fostering understanding and shifting to solution-oriented thinking, the episode highlights the importance of addressing psychological safety issues for team well-being. Nimi shares how this experience propelled her growth as a coach and the significance of proactive communication.

Featured Book of the Week: Drive by Dan Pink

In the segment, Nimi discusses the impact that the books “Drive” by Dan Pink and “Rich Dad, Poor Dad” by Robert Kiyosaki had on her role as a Scrum Master. Emphasizing motivation and empowerment, Nimi delves into how “Drive” highlights the often-overlooked importance of the key concept of intrinsic motivation, emphasizing its significance for Scrum Masters. Nimi encourages listeners to delve into these influential reads for valuable insights into fostering team motivation and developing crucial interpersonal skills.

Transform Your Agile Teams with Hard-Earned Lessons from Super-Experienced Scrum Masters

Do you wish you had decades of experience? Learn from the Best Scrum Masters In The World, Today! The Tips from the Trenches – Scrum Master edition audiobook includes hours of audio interviews with SM’s that have decades of experience: from Mike Cohn to Linda Rising, Christopher Avery, and many more. Super-experienced Scrum Masters share their hard-earned lessons with you. Learn those today, make your teams awesome!

About Nimi Bello

Nimi Bello is a seasoned Agile professional with a diverse skill set. She currently serves as a Release Train Engineer at Deloitte. With over 8 years of experience, Nimi is an award-winning Creative Director, Principal Agile Consultant, and Strategic Partner. Her expertise lies in sales, technology, and guiding teams through the complex journey of transitioning to Agile methodology. Nimi is a global change agent with a fervor for building and scaling businesses and communities.

You can link with Nimi Bello on LinkedIn.

Josh Lambert: Strategies for Improved Team Collaboration in Agile Teams

In this episode, Josh shares a team’s struggles – newly formed, but spanning distant timezones, and facing communication issues. Individual work overshadowed teamwork, and this was made worse by very unclear responses from a team member that was not meeting their sprint goals. Frustration peaked on the final day of one of the Sprints. Reflecting on that story, Josh advocates transparent communication, urging team members to share when help is needed. He stresses the importance of a working agreement when seeking help and proposes conducting psychological safety assessments and focusing on team well-being.

Featured Book for the Week: “Coaching Agile Teams” by Lyssa Adkins

In this episode, Josh recommends “Coaching Agile Teams” by Lyssa Adkins for Scrum Masters. He highlights its enduring value, providing continuous support for navigating challenges. Drawing from a team member’s experience feeling trapped in a “hamster wheel,” Josh emphasizes the book’s relatable stories, offering preparation for similar situations.

Transform Your Agile Teams with Hard-Earned Lessons from Super-Experienced Scrum Masters

Do you wish you had decades of experience? Learn from the Best Scrum Masters In The World, Today! The Tips from the Trenches – Scrum Master edition audiobook includes hours of audio interviews with SM’s that have decades of experience: from Mike Cohn to Linda Rising, Christopher Avery, and many more. Super-experienced Scrum Masters share their hard-earned lessons with you. Learn those today, make your teams awesome!

About Josh Lambert

Josh is an Agile Coach at a financial institution. He has been through a few different Agile Transformations. And became a Scrum Master in one of the early transformations and loved the role where where he stayed for 6 years, after which he transitioned into an Agile Coach.

You can link with Josh Lambert on LinkedIn.

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Down-to-earth, hard-earned Scrum Masters lessons and the Tips from the Trenches e-book table of contents, delivered by email
Enter e-mail to download a clickable PO Cheat Sheet
This handy Coach Your PO cheat-sheet includes questions to help you define the problem, and links to handy, easy techniques to help you coach your Product Owner
Enter e-mail to download a clickable PO Cheat Sheet
This handy Coach Your PO cheat-sheet includes questions to help you define the problem, and links to handy, easy techniques to help you coach your Product Owner
Enter e-mail to download a checklist to help your PO manage their time
This simple checklist and calendar handout, with a coaching article will help you define the minimum enagement your PO must have with the team
Enter e-mail to download a checklist to help your PO manage their time
This simple checklist and calendar handout, with a coaching article will help you define the minimum enagement your PO must have with the team
Internal Conference
Checklist
Internal Conference
Checklist
Download a detailed How-To to help measure success for your team
Motivate your team with the right metrics, and the right way to visualize and track them. Marcus presents a detailed How-To document based on his experience at The Bungsu Hospital
Download a detailed How-To to help measure success for your team
Read about Visualization and TRANSFORM The way your team works
A moving story of how work at the Bungsu Hospital was transformed by a simple tool that you can use to help your team.
Read about Visualization and TRANSFORM The way your team works
A Quick & Practical Guide to Agile Projects for BI
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