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Peter Janssens: Scrum Master success is similar to CEO success. Here’s why…

When it comes to Scrum Master success, Peter explains why the success metrics for a Scrum Master are similar to those of a CEO. He focuses on the need for learning about the team’s surroundings, and to think about the outcomes (what we want to achieve, not what want to do) in a way that he describes as “outside – in”. In this segment, we also explore the idea of “convergence”, a critical thinking approach that Peter describes as serving CEO’s and Scrum Masters alike!

In this segment, we refer to the NoEstimates approach for software development.

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: The Happiness Door Agile Retrospective

Peter’s advice is to build retrospectives into the day-to-day work with the teams, and try not to need a specific time for a retrospective. For example, he suggests: “have mini retrospectives every hour.” However, when that’s not (yet) the case, he prefers to use The Happiness Door retrospective, and explains his approach to that format.

Retrospectives, planning sessions, vision workshops, we are continuously helping teams learn about how to collaborate in practice! In this Actionable Agile Tools book, Jeff Campbell shares some of the tools he’s learned over a decade of coaching Agile Teams. The pragmatic coaching book you need, right now! Buy Actionable Agile Tools on Amazon, or directly from the author, and supercharge your facilitation toolbox!

About Peter Janssens

Peter built a long career in agile coaching and training, and worked in leadership positions leading a PO team, and recently became CTO in a SAAS product company. Peter loves all conversations on effectiveness of team decisions, but he quickly realized that being responsible is different from being a coach. As a leader there is the challenge of sticking to the same foundations when dealing with delivery pressure.

You can link with Peter Janssens on LinkedIn.

Gert Brits: When “taking it to the team” is the wrong solutions, an unexpected lesson for Scrum Masters

Gert heard his colleagues complain to him about some of the challenges and problems they were facing. Trying to help them, Gert setup a session for the team of Scrum Masters to discuss the problems he had heard. However, there was one problem… Listen in to learn when it is not a good idea to set up a collective retrospective, even if you know there are problems that need to be solved!

Recovering from failure, or difficult moments is a critical skill for Scrum Masters. Not only because of us, but also because the teams, and stakeholders we work with will also face these moments! We need inspiring stories to help them, and ourselves! The Bungsu Story, is an inspiring story by Marcus Hammarberg which shows how a Coach can help organizations recover even from the most disastrous situations! Learn how Marcus helped The Bungsu, a hospital in Indonesia, recover from near-bankruptcy, twice! Using Lean and Agile methods to rebuild an organization and a team! An inspiring story you need to know about! Buy the book on Amazon: The Bungsu Story – How Lean and Kanban Saved a Small Hospital in Indonesia. Twice. and Can Help You Reshape Work in Your Company.

About Gert Brits

Gert came from a programming background, and has worked across multiple industries, applying Agile Coaching across diverse and non tech areas. He has a focus on group dynamics blended with systems thinking, and the art of balancing application vs theory.

You can link with Gert Brits on LinkedIn.

Fred Deichler: A simple rule that makes Agile Retrospectives impactful, not merely helpful!

At one point in his career, Fred was both the Scrum Master and manager for the teams he supported. As he reflected on the impact of the retrospectives he facilitated, he noticed that even though the retrospectives took place, the same things kept coming up at every retrospective. The retrospectives were helpful for the teams to “vent” their frustrations and talk about what was not working well, however, there was never time to discuss the improvement actions. This anti-pattern helped Fred realize that he needed to change the way he facilitated retrospective meetings, and he put in place a simple rule that ensured the retrospectives were impactful, not just helpful for the team!

Featured Book of the Week: Scrum: The Art of Doing Twice the Work in Half the Time by Sutherland

The book Scrum: The Art of Doing Twice the Work in Half the Time by Sutherland, was a critical book for Fred’s career and personal development in his understanding and practice of Scrum and Agile. One of the key lessons Fred highlights from the book is the razor sharp focus on delivering something “immediately”, by the use of questions such as “what can we deliver right away?”

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 Fred Deichler

Always leaning on the Scrum values and Agile principles (even before he knew about them), Fred has guided numerous teams through their Agile Journeys over his 20-year career in Technology leadership. Driven by a passion for continual improvement and finding a balance between people, process, and tools. And Fred knows his own journey is just as important.

You can link with Fred Deichler on LinkedIn.

Stacey Taurah: Focusing Agile teams on “the most important thing”, a retrospective format

“Can I make one person’s day a little bit easier?” This powerful question helps Stacey focus on her role as the Scrum Master for Agile teams, but it also helps her be pragmatic about the choices that inevitably come. In this episode, we also talk about the importance of collecting feedback often, and one question that helps us focus on the team at all times!

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: Focusing the team on “the most important thing”

Stacey shares with us a format she designed to help the team focus on “The Most Important Thing”. This format focuses each team member on the thing they most care about, and uses familiar facilitation techniques to avoid taking too many actions out of the retrospective.

Retrospectives, planning sessions, vision workshops, we are continuously helping teams learn about how to collaborate in practice! In this Actionable Agile Tools book, Jeff Campbell shares some of the tools he’s learned over a decade of coaching Agile Teams. The pragmatic coaching book you need, right now! Buy Actionable Agile Tools on Amazon, or directly from the author, and supercharge your facilitation toolbox!

About Stacey Taurah

A seasoned agile coach with a squiggly line into tech and delivery. From forensics to frameworks and all that’s in between.

You can link with Stacey Taurah on LinkedIn.

Paula Dunne: Learning about being a great Scrum Master by looking at the team’s Agile Retrospectives

Paula suggests that our retrospectives, how they run, how effective they are, can be a great indicator of our success as Scrum Masters. We discuss what to look for, and how to reflect on the retrospectives to take lessons for our work as Scrum Masters.

Featured Retrospective for the Week: Helping team members integrate their thinking with a drawing icebreaker

When teams come to the Retrospective, they have the burden of the Sprint that just ended still fresh in their mind. It’s our job, as facilitators, to help the team get out of that “pressure” and “performance” mode, into the reflection and learning mode they need in the Retrospectives. Paula suggests that starting with a drawing icebreaker is a great way to help teams focus on the topic at hand, and get ready to learn deeply about their work!

 

Retrospectives, planning sessions, vision workshops, we are continuously helping teams learn about how to collaborate in practice! In this Actionable Agile Tools book, Jeff Campbell shares some of the tools he’s learned over a decade of coaching Agile Teams. The pragmatic coaching book you need, right now! Buy Actionable Agile Tools on Amazon, or directly from the author, and supercharge your facilitation toolbox!

About Paula Dunne

Paula is an Agile Coach with experience in large organization Agile adoption as well as in coaching product owners.

You can link with Paula Dunne 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
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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
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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