BONUS: Psychological safety for teams, an interview with Stephan Wiedner

Psychological Safety is a commonly discussed topic in Agile circles. We’re frequently reminded how important it is for team performance. But how do we, as Scrum Masters, help our teams achieve that state, where they are free to express their thoughts on the challenges they face as a team without the fear of being overruled, ridiculed, or chastised for having a non-standard opinion?

In this episode, we explore Psychological Safety with Stephan Wiedner, and discuss what we can do to help create an environment where each individual can excel and help the team perform.

A personal lesson learned about the critical importance of Psychological Safety

Continue reading BONUS: Psychological safety for teams, an interview with Stephan Wiedner

Franziska Moenster: Designing Agile Retrospectives for maximum engagement, lessons learned

When we are starting our journey as Scrum Masters, one of the ceremonies that most scares us is the retrospective. There’s so much hanging on that ceremony, from the need to get an action that leads to improvement, to having the team engaged and everybody participating. In that context, it’s natural that we try our best and prepare extensively for the Retrospective. However, there’s a point when preparation is just too much! In this episode, we talk about what is that limit, and how to look at Retrospective facilitation in a way that leaves space for the team to take ownership, and be active in the Retrospective.

About Franziska Moenster

Franny (short for Franziska) loves seeing the power of building strong performing teams that build products in a customer centric way. She’s been working as a Scrum Master/Agile Coach for over 5 years. Profiting from her hands-on experience on scaling agile across teams and her joy of trying out new things she is always inspecting and adapting on an organizational level as well! On a personal note, she has recently moved to Tenerife to follow her passion of freediving.

You can link with Franziska Moenster on LinkedIn.

Mher Nalbandyan: Overcoming the “only the senior team members are allowed to speak” Scrum anti-pattern

Sometimes we face teams where team members start, and then get used to making decisions on their own without involving the rest of the team, or communicating those decisions to their colleagues. In this team, the people were changing, and the new team members were not “given” the right to speak, which led to the oldest team members making all of the decisions on their own. Mher noticed that this was causing a motivation problem in the team, and started to work with the team to overcome this anti-pattern.

Featured Book of the Week: Scrum, the art of doing twice the work in half the time by Sutherland

In Scrum, the art of doing twice the work in half the time by Sutherland, Mher found a book that was easy to read and understand, which reminded him of what Agile, Scrum, and Extreme Programming are all about. The book includes stories and the “why” behind Scrum’s impact.

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 Mher Nalbandyan

Mher works at Mbition in Berlin, where they develop the next generation of information systems for Mercedes-Benz.

You can link with Mher Nalbandyan on LinkedIn and connect with Mher Nalbandyan on Twitter.

Miguel Moro: Helping a Scrum team go from competing with each other, to helping each other

Miguel started observing that the team members in this Scrum team were constantly trying to establish their own ideas as the “winning ideas”. The behaviors he observed helped Miguel understand that the team members were competing with each other, instead of focusing on the shared success for their team. In this episode, we discuss how to help our teams move from competition to collaboration, through a series of deliberate, but small tweaks to the discussion, and decision making processes in the team.

Featured Book of The Week: The Principles of Product Development Flow: Second Generation Lean Product Development by Don Reinertsen

In The Principles of Product Development Flow: Second Generation Lean Product Development by Don Reinertsen, Miguel found a helpful understanding of queues, which affect the progress/flow of work in our organizations. In that book, there are also insights into how variability affects productivity of knowledge work teams, and Reinertsen also gives us concrete ways to work through these concepts with the teams we help.

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 Miguel Moro

As an Agile practitioner, Miguel’s passion is to delight customers using Agile practices and Lean methodologies in development teams, to explore the best alternatives to deliver in an iterative and incremental way, with a continuous value of flow, as fast as possible, and with innovative solutions. He does that by focusing on high performance teams and happiness at work.

You can link with Miguel Moro on LinkedIn and connect with Miguel Moro on Twitter.

Thomas van Zuijlen: The double-diamond visualization to guide Scrum teams in their retrospectives

Thomas’ approach to being a successful Scrum Master includes “making waves”, or has he describes it: “getting angry emails”. We talk about how important it is to look at the reactions people show when discussing the ways of working, and how important emotions are in showing us – the Scrum Masters – if we are having an impact!

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: The double-diamond visualization to guide Scrum teams in their retrospectives

Thomas likes to use many different formats with the teams he works with. However, he strives to make the process of the retrospective explicit for the teams as they get started. He uses the Double-diamond visualization for the process of the workshop. After a few times of using that visualization, the teams know how the retrospectives go, and start being more natural and taking on the normal flow of the retrospective.

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 Thomas van Zuijlen

Thomas is an independent Scrum Master and workshop facilitator from the Netherlands. He believes self-organization, empiricism and facilitation will save the world (of work). A former developer and occasional quiz master with 15 years of experience, Thomas operates in the Netherlands and Lithuania. His weekly newsletter on practical agility can be found at TheBacklog.cc.

You can link with Thomas van Zuijlen on LinkedIn.

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