Isshai Kamara: Empowering Agile Teams and Organizations, Metrics, Maturity, and Mastery

Isshai emphasizes the importance of learning about, and following organizational criteria, aiding teams in maturing within 3 to 4 months towards self-organization, and contributing to the broader organizational objectives. Isshai also underlines the value of collaboration among Scrum Masters to enhance their collective impact. Key practices include setting context-specific metrics, regular discussions about release timelines and goals, sharing team experiences, and using these insights to guide training or coaching sessions. Additionally, she suggests using tools like JIRA dashboards for effective follow-ups and progress tracking.

Featured Retrospective Format For The Week: User Story Awards

Isshai shares her enthusiasm for making retrospectives engaging and enjoyable. Among the various formats she uses, her favorite is the “User Story Awards”, which is similar to the Oscar Awards Retrospective.  This unique approach encourages developers to think critically about the user stories tackled during the sprint. Isshai highlights the importance of having an open discussion after selecting the stories, where team members can candidly talk about their experiences. She also emphasizes the use of humor as a tool to address challenging topics, making the retrospective process not only insightful but also enjoyable for everyone involved.

How can I, as a Scrum Master, supercharge my facilitation?

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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.

Lorna Mason & Jon Lawrence: Two Agile retrospective formats for two different times in the lifecycle of a team

When a team is performing, and they show up and are happy in their work, these are great signs that the Scrum Master has helped the team. All of these are signs that we can be sure to move on, and the team will likely pick-up and own their own process. We also about about how Scrum Masters can help to create an environment where teams can succeed.

In this segment, we talk about “bad jokes” and “dad jokes” as a great way to break the ice in teams or retrospectives. 

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: The Sailboat as a great new-team retrospective

When we start with a new team, it’s good to have a format that helps us understand the team, and their context. Jona and Lorna suggest we could start with the Sailboat Retrospective and use that to establish a baseline for the team. Then we talk about a retrospective format to use at the end of a cycle with the team, the Awards Ceremony retrospective. This format helps us get closure while learning from what happened during that period.

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 Lorna Mason & Jon Lawrence

Lorna Mason and Jon Lawrence are both agilists working in an insurance scale-up based in Brighton. Their journey to agile has walked a less ‘traditional’ path of Change Management and Continuous Improvement, to Scrum Master, Delivery Manager and Agile Coach; (proving not EVERY Scrum Master needs to code!). They hold the firm belief that you can be a successful Scrum Master as long as you genuinely care about people and value first; and hold a profound desire to always make things better!

You can link with Lorna Mason on LinkedIn

You can link with Jon Lawrence on LinkedIn.

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