Sarah Finn: Learning to say “no” to stakeholders, a critical PO lesson

Product Owners that learn to be available to the team, and need to learn to say “no” to stakeholders are the two aspects of product ownership we talk about in this PO episode. 

The Great Product Owner: Helping PO’s learn to work with the Scrum team

Great Product Owners are able to make time to talk with the teams, and to be available when they have questions, and topics to discuss. But we should not forget that part of our job as Scrum Masters is to make sure the PO fully understands their role in the team. 

In this segment, we refer to the results of the PO survey we ran a few years back, which lists the 7 most common Product Onwer anti-patterns

The Bad Product Owner: Learning to say “no” to stakeholders, a critical PO lesson

The toughest part of the PO job is to be able to say “no” so that the team (and the PO) can focus on the right things for the product and the customer. When a PO is unable to push back, and say “no” to stakeholders, many anti-patterns develop. The reason is simple: there are always many, many ideas of what could be done, but most will never add value to the product and customers. 

Are you having trouble helping the team working well with their Product Owner? We’ve put together a course to help you work on the collaboration team-product owner. You can find it at: bit.ly/coachyourpo. 18 modules, 8+ hours of modules with tools and techniques that you can use to help teams and PO’s collaborate.

About Sarah Finn

Sarah Finn is an Agile Coach, within an Agile Practice Team in Red Hat. Sarah currently works with an open-source community facing team called “The Community Platform Engineering Team”. Sarah also helps co-manage the Agile DevOps Community of Practice. Sarah believes by simply creating a safe environment for discussion & collaboration can open up so many opportunities to work together towards continuous improvement.

You can link with Sarah Finn on LinkedIn and connect with Sarah Finn on Twitter.

Sarah Finn: Helping teams that are new to Scrum

When working with agile adoption, Sarah reminds us that we must help build momentum in the team by focusing on small wins at the start. This is especially important when working with a new team, that is not yet familiar with us. As time goes by, the team will learn to trust the change process is there to help them, not make it more difficult for them. 

When helping new teams adopt Agile, it is also critical to involve them in the process with simple techniques like asking them if they want, and feel ready, to run the Scrum ceremonies themselves. 

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: The 4L’s retrospective

Sarah shares the 4L’s retrospective, a format that helps the team focus on the small improvements that create and foster a culture of continuous improvement. 

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 Sarah Finn

Sarah Finn is an Agile Coach, within an Agile Practice Team in Red Hat. Sarah currently works with an open-source community facing team called “The Community Platform Engineering Team”. Sarah also helps co-manage the Agile DevOps Community of Practice. Sarah believes by simply creating a safe environment for discussion & collaboration can open up so many opportunities to work together towards continuous improvement.

You can link with Sarah Finn on LinkedIn and connect with Sarah Finn on Twitter.

Sarah Finn: Solving the “not invented here” syndrome in change management

When Sarah joined this team, she heard about how management had pushed on the team a particular solution which the team did not believe would work. Sarah had a difficult task: how to get the problem solved, but not let the team feel “pushed” onto a solution they did not believe in? Sarah shares how she was able to solve the problem by bringing people together and focusing the conversation on the goal. 

About Sarah Finn

Sarah Finn is an Agile Coach, within an Agile Practice Team in Red Hat. Sarah currently works with an open-source community facing team called “The Community Platform Engineering Team”. Sarah also helps co-manage the Agile DevOps Community of Practice. Sarah believes by simply creating a safe environment for discussion & collaboration can open up so many opportunities to work together towards continuous improvement.

You can link with Sarah Finn on LinkedIn and connect with Sarah Finn on Twitter.

Sarah Finn: How to increase safety within a team, tips for scrum masters

As this story starts, we hear how the team was starting to develop a blame culture. Sarah shares how she was able to help the team feel safe so that they could address the challenges they were facing instead of spiraling into a finger-pointing nightmare.

Featured Book of the Week: Who Moved My Cheese? By Spencer Johnson

In Who Moved My Cheese? By Spencer Johnson, Sarah learned a few key lessons about change management. She shares with us some of those lessons that remind us how we can do a good job at change leadership in our Scrum Master role. 

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 Sarah Finn

Sarah Finn is an Agile Coach, within an Agile Practice Team in Red Hat. Sarah currently works with an open-source community facing team called “The Community Platform Engineering Team”. Sarah also helps co-manage the Agile DevOps Community of Practice. Sarah believes by simply creating a safe environment for discussion & collaboration can open up so many opportunities to work together towards continuous improvement.

You can link with Sarah Finn on LinkedIn and connect with Sarah Finn on Twitter.

Sarah Finn: Helping beginner teams adopt Scrum

When helping a team adopt Scrum, we need to be aware of their journey with Agile and Scrum. This particular team, as Sarah learned quickly, was not ready, and Sarah has just thrown the team to the deep end of Scrum adoption. This is a great story for Scrum Masters wanting to learn how to help teams that are just at the start of their journey, and even skeptic of Agile. 

About Sarah Finn

Sarah Finn is an Agile Coach, within an Agile Practice Team in Red Hat. Sarah currently works with an open-source community facing team called “The Community Platform Engineering Team”. Sarah also helps co-manage the Agile DevOps Community of Practice. Sarah believes by simply creating a safe environment for discussion & collaboration can open up so many opportunities to work together towards continuous improvement.

You can link with Sarah Finn on LinkedIn and connect with Sarah Finn on Twitter.