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BONUS: Unleashing the Power of Tension (Meetings) in Agile Teams with Sara Clark

Are you an Agile Coach or Scrum Master looking to revolutionize your team dynamics? Tackle latent tension or conflict? And generally help teams work better together? 

We have an episode for you, featuring Sara Clark, a pioneer in the use of “Tension Meetings”, the topic of the episode.

These meetings can transform conflicts into fuel for growth.

But what exactly are they? How can they reshape your team’s future? Keep reading and uncover the secrets to harnessing tension!

The Genesis of Tension Meetings

Sara’s journey from higher education to Agile methodologies led her to discover “Tension Meetings” while working in a volunteer collective.

Despite the initial failure, these meetings proved instrumental in addressing underlying conflicts.

The concept, rooted in Holacracy, begins with the premise that “something feels off,” serving

Tension Meetings in Action

Continue reading BONUS: Unleashing the Power of Tension (Meetings) in Agile Teams with Sara Clark

Armin Mandara: Breaking Change Resistance with Dialogue and Collaboration, A New Scrum Master Story

Armin shares a story from his early days as a Scrum Master, leading a team in developing an ecommerce platform for a major corporation. Despite initial challenges, he sought to introduce project retrospectives for broader learning. However, faced with resistance from project managers, he reflected on the experience and found strength in seeking support and open communication. Armin emphasizes the inevitability of resistance and advocates for transparent, honest conversations in the workplace, acknowledging the power of addressing concerns openly.

The inspiring story of how a failing hospital turned things around with Agile and Lean

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 Armin Mandara

Armin is the Head of Scrum Masters at IBM iX, a leading digital agency. With a career spanning seven years as a Scrum Master, Armin has partnered with numerous teams to successfully deliver top-notch digital products. His passion lies in enabling agile teams to achieve their goals and unleash their true potential.

You can link with Armin Mandara on LinkedIn.

Aria Omidvar: Rebuilding Trust In Your Scrum Team, After A Big Disappointment

Aria, a Scrum Master, recounts a challenging situation where his team faced significant changes, including losing key members and transitioning to remote work. He attempted to address the issues through a retrospective but faced resistance in setting up follow-up sessions. This led to a team member deeming the retro “useless,” which left Aria feeling disheartened. As a developer and Scrum Master, Aria reflects on the importance of open communication and acknowledges his loss of faith in the team at that time. Ultimately, he grapples with regaining faith in his team, highlighting the complexity of his role in this critical juncture.

The inspiring story of how a failing hospital turned things around with Agile and Lean

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 Aria Omidvar

Aria has 4+ years of experience serving as Scrum Master, Product Owner, and Agile Coach (CSM, A-CSM, CSPO) from single teams to multiple teams and the whole software organization. He’s a Software Engineer turned Software Developer turned Peopleware Developer and Agilist.

You can link with and connect with Aria Omidvar on Twitter.

Michael Schmidt: When Comfort Stagnates Progress For An Agile Team, The Problem Avoidance Anti-pattern

In this episode, Michael recounts his experience in a company where he went against his instincts due to comfort. The software development environment prioritized being busy over progress. Goal setting and sprint planning were undervalued, and negative behaviors like gossiping prevailed. Michael’s attempts to offer help were met with resistance, as the team downplayed any possible issues. This anti-pattern of avoiding talking about problems hindered growth. Through perseverance, Michael learned the importance of trusting his intuition and initiating small, positive changes to build trust and overcome the fear, or dislike to discuss obstacles and problems.

Featured Book Of The Week: Agile Retrospectives: Making Good Teams Great, by Diana Larsen and Esther Derby

In this episode, Michael shares his favorite Agile book, Esther Derby’s and Diana Larsen’s “Agile Retrospectives: Making Good Teams Great”. He emphasizes that every practice should have a purpose, instilling a profound sense of understanding. Michael highlights the true objective of retrospectives – not just for change, but for personal reflection. Establishing a routine for reflection minimizes change risks, providing a safe space for experimentation and learning from new approaches. The book’s insights resonate with Michael, underlining the importance of intentionality in Agile practices.

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 Michael Schmidt

Michael a Berlin-based Agile Coach for teams, roles and organisations around software based product development. Michael invented “the taskboard” on his own, which ignited his working agile by conviction some 13 years ago.

You can link with Michael Schmidt on LinkedIn and connect with Michael Schmidt on Twitter.

Aki Salmi: Learning Decision-Making without Explicit Leadership, A Key Skill For Scrum Teams

In this episode, Aki reflects on a highly effective team, drawing inspiration from Google’s Project Aristotle on high-performing teams. He recounts the story of a team that operated without a designated leader, relying on consensus-based decision-making. However, this approach often hindered progress and experimentation. Aki highlights the importance of bringing up such systemic issues in retrospectives. He advises teams to step back and critically evaluate their working methods and their implications. Aki also touches on concepts like “double loop learning” and emphasizes the significance of considering core tasks, emotional climate, and effective structures in the work environment.

Featured Book For The Week: Dare to Lead by Brene Brown

In this segment, Aki talks about Brene Brown’s book “Dare to Lead,” emphasizing its transformative impact on authentic self-expression in the workplace. He highlights the value of embracing one’s humanity, including emotions, and underscores the importance of vulnerability and visibility. Aki also references books like “Agile Retrospectives” by Larsen and Derby, and “Atlas of the Heart” by Brene Brown. He discusses trust-building, echoing the idea that trust is built in small moments. The episode encourages listeners to prioritize trust and genuine self-presentation in professional 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 Aki Salmi

Aki is a software crafter and shares the joy of coding and the value of empathy at work. That is, Aki works on ones and zeros (code) and everything else (humans).

You can link with Aki Salmi 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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