Nick Nielsen: Creating a success dashboard for yourself as a Scrum Master

Scrum Masters work on many levels of the organization, and sometimes that makes success hard to spot. Nick shares how he starated using metrics for many different aspects of his work, and how he was able to create a perspective on his own success through constant measurements with a holistic view. 

In this episode, we talk about the DORA metrics

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: The Tournament of Ideas Agile Retrospective

The Sailboat Retrospective is one of Nick’s favourite formats. He explains that the technique can be easily adopted to many different contexts, and helps people think through their context in a visual manner. In this episode, we also talk about the “tournament retrospective”, where improvement ideas are pitched against each other to find the one idea the team wants to focus on.

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About Nick Nielsen

Nick completed his education at Aarhus University in Denmark and currently works in the Digital Organisation at Grundfos, the worlds biggest pump manufacturer. He views him self as a pragmatic Agile Handyman.

You can link with Nick Nielsen on LinkedIn and connect with Nick Nielsen on Twitter.

Nick Nielsen: Helping Agile teams survive the conflict of values between Agile and Waterfall

In this story, we hear about one person that joined an Agile team, but was not ready to adopt the Agile mindset and values. What happened next was a warning for all of us that face similar situations. We discuss what happens when people join a team with very different mindsets and values than their own, and how Scrum Masters can prepare for that situation.

Featured Book of the Week: Accelerate by Gene Kim et al. 

In Accelerate by Gene Kim et al., Nick found out about the DORA metrics, and how metrics can be a key source of insights for Agile adoption, and continuous improvement. Nick describes how the book helped him create his own dashboard for Agile adoption the organizations where he works.

How can Angela (the Agile Coach) quickly build healthy relationships with the teams she’s supposed to help? What were the steps she followed to help the Breeze App team fight off the competition? Find out how Angela helped Naomi and the team go from “behind” to being ahead of Intuition Bank, by focusing on the people! Download the first 4 chapters of the BOOK for FREE while it is in Beta!

About Nick Nielsen

Nick completed his education at Aarhus University in Denmark and currently works in the Digital Organisation at Grundfos, the worlds biggest pump manufacturer. He views him self as a pragmatic Agile Handyman.

You can link with Nick Nielsen on LinkedIn and connect with Nick Nielsen on Twitter

BONUS: Boosting collaboration with an Internal Unconference, Gene Connolly and Jeff Campbell

Jeff is the author of Actionable Agile tools (available on Amazon, and direct from the author at bit.ly/aatbook).


Collaboration is one of the key aspects of focus for Scrum Masters. We are, and should always be on the lookout for way to improve collaboration in our teams, and across teams and departments. In this episode, we dive into a specific Actionable Agile Tool that aims to boost collaboration: The Internal Unconference. Gene and Jeff share their own experience organizing Internal Unconferences, and why this even may be exactly what you need to improve collaboration in your organization.

Discovering how to improve collaboration across departments

Continue reading BONUS: Boosting collaboration with an Internal Unconference, Gene Connolly and Jeff Campbell

BONUS: How to setup Agile and DevOps teams, Team Topologies interview with Matthew Skelton and Manuel Pais

Setting up teams to work collaboratively is one of the challenges that organizations go through when adopting Agile. The functional team setup (all DBAs, all testers, all windows devs together, etc.) is not acceptable for teams that want to quickly develop and deliver products and services to the market. But neither is it possible to have all possible skills (sometimes 10’s of skills) in one team because organizations simply don’t have that many people with certain skills. 

In this episode, we talk about the possible team topologies, and how each of those affects our ability to deliver in different organizations. 

How we set up teams directly affects the quality of the software teams deliver

Continue reading BONUS: How to setup Agile and DevOps teams, Team Topologies interview with Matthew Skelton and Manuel Pais

BONUS: Jeff Campbell and Amer Hamzeh talk organizational Agile transformation, DevOps adoption, and more

Jeff is the author of Actionable Agile tools (available on Amazon, and direct from the author at bit.ly/aatbook).


Transformation is a big word. What does it mean in practice, and what can we learn from Jeff’s and Amer’s stories to help us in our own roles as Scrum Masters, Agile Coaches and Change Agents? We deep dive into a real story that started small, and slow, but achieved great changes that both teams and their organization benefited from.

The Foundation Team – Small Changes for Big Impact

Continue reading BONUS: Jeff Campbell and Amer Hamzeh talk organizational Agile transformation, DevOps adoption, and more

BONUS: Leena N interview – Continuous Delivery for Scrum teams, Part 7

From her early start with Extreme Programming to learning how to integrate testing with Continous Delivery, we explore Leena’s story and describe some of the most important lessons she collected about adopting CD/CI.

Read on to learn what were Leena’s main lessons, as well as the main challenges teams face when adopting CD/CI.

Continue reading BONUS: Leena N interview – Continuous Delivery for Scrum teams, Part 7

BONUS: Wouter Lagerweij interview – Continuous Delivery for Scrum teams, Part 5

Wouter started his Continuous Delivery journey as an Extreme Programmer in his first years of engineering experience. He shares the story of how, as a team, they sat together with the operations department to learn how they developed their software. Thanks to that, they radically changed their build system to export the kind of packages that operations needed. A brilliant story that also illustrates the adage: “Your first customer is the next step in the process!”

Read more to learn why testing is such a key skill and technical area when adopting Continuous Delivery.

Continue reading BONUS: Wouter Lagerweij interview – Continuous Delivery for Scrum teams, Part 5

BONUS: Chris O’Dell interview – Continuous Delivery for Scrum teams, Part 5

Chris started her Continuous Delivery in a small agency, nurturing a build server that nobody cared for. That gave her an insight that is not very common: taking care of the build server was a very practical way to help and care for the team’s success. It was a practical tool that the team needed, but no one was looking after. It was a concrete way to help people. 

Read more to find out how trust plays a key role in Continuous Delivery adoption, and to read Chris’ recipe to get your team started with CD.

Continue reading BONUS: Chris O’Dell interview – Continuous Delivery for Scrum teams, Part 5

BONUS: Manuel Pais interview – Continuous Delivery for Scrum teams, Part 4

How do we get started with Continuous Delivery? Manuel suggests that we run a Value Stream Mapping session with all the teams involved in the release process to learn about the “current state” of the release process. 

We also review the most common challenges and blocks for teams that are starting to adopt Continuous Delivery. 

Read on to learn about the different motivations businesses have to adopt Continuous Delivery, and Manuel’s 3 steps from bi-weekly release to Continuous Delivery.

Continue reading BONUS: Manuel Pais interview – Continuous Delivery for Scrum teams, Part 4

BONUS: Morten Herman interview – Continuous Delivery for Scrum teams, Part 3

Morten’s adoption story starts with a team at eBay Denmark. The team had started working in a more continuous mode, but there was a lot of “release friction” as Morten calls it. You are probably familiar with that friction: it takes a long time to release; the site needed to be “closed” for every release; the team would need to come in at night during the weekend, etc. 

That’s the reality for many teams. No surprise they prefer to release less often. In this segment, we explore that story, and also the steps the team took to go from “high friction” to “no friction”. 

Read more to find out how Dev and Ops are different and why that matters when adopting Continous Delivery.

Continue reading BONUS: Morten Herman interview – Continuous Delivery for Scrum teams, Part 3

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