Harri Tunturivuori: When Suggestions Sound Like Orders, The Cost of Micro-Management in Agile Teams

In this episode, Harri recounts a challenging experience he had while working with a team that had a new manager. The manager was promoted from within the team and was a high-performing team member, but lacked good leadership skills. He couldn’t let go of the technical skills and ended up micro-managing the team.

The manager would step in and give suggestions to the team members, but it came out as an order. He even wrote the solution in the user stories, which resulted in the team disengaging because the manager was bossing them.

Some team members quit their jobs, and others became demotivated. Harri felt helpless in the situation and eventually came up with tips to deal with it, including having a conversation with the manager, preparing for the conversation, and being understanding. The team’s feedback was collected, and facts were presented to the manager on how this behavior was affecting the team.

This episode is a must-listen for anyone dealing with anti-patterns in their team dynamics.

Featured Book of the Week: Scrum Mastery by Geoff Watts

Harri’s most influential book is Scrum Mastery by Geoff Watts, who has been a past guest on the podcast. The book offers many practical tips and advice for Scrum Masters, emphasizing the importance of being a servant leader. Harri found the book funny, which made it a pleasant read. He appreciated the tips provided in the book, which can help Scrum Masters go from being good to great. Geoff Watts is a well-known author in the field of Scrum and agile software development, and his book has been highly recommended by professionals in the industry. If you are a Scrum Master looking for practical advice to improve your leadership skills, Scrum Mastery is definitely worth checking out.

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 Harri Tunturivuori

Harri is an experienced leader, Scrum Master, and Agile Coach who was introduced to the world of agile software development in 2010. Since then, Harri has had the pleasure of leading great agile teams in various forms.

Harri enjoys working in a fun environment where there is room for innovation, and Harri is driven by the challenge of growing a group of good people into a great team.

You can link with Harri Tunturivuori on LinkedIn.

BONUS: Helping Scrum Masters build empathy towards Agile Team Members with J.B. Rainsberger

JB Rainsberger is a software development consultant who has a unique perspective on Agile software development, team motivation, team leadership, and team management for Scrum Masters. In his early career, JB worked as a software developer and had a keen interest in the personal aspects of software development. Over time, he began to focus more on interpersonal aspects, such as communication and empathy, as many of his assignments required him to develop those skills.

These days, JB works with individuals and organizations to help them improve their software development processes, with a particular focus on the human aspect of development. He has spoken at events, and written on this topic on his blog blog.JBrains.ca. One key inspiration for JB was the book “The Secrets of Consulting” by Gerald (aka Jerry) Weinberg.

Continue reading BONUS: Helping Scrum Masters build empathy towards Agile Team Members with J.B. Rainsberger

Meena Venkataraman: Building Psychological Safety, lessons from helping an Agile team to share interpersonal feedback

In this segment, Meena shares her experience coaching a team that struggled to take off and was stuck in a cycle. Despite being nice to each other during scrum events, team members were not sharing feedback with each other, and psychological safety was not present in the team. Meena stresses the importance of having hard conversations and discussing the interpersonal topics in the team, and she suggests that teams should have the necessary tools to talk about difficult topics.

By highlighting the value that a team coach can bring to a team, Meena emphasizes the importance of psychological safety and how it plays a crucial role in team dynamics. She suggests that teams should be aware of the small things that can become big things and make sure that they are having hard conversations to address interpersonal issues. Ultimately, Meena’s experience coaching this team shows that building a successful team is not just about being nice to each other but also about creating a culture of openness, trust, and psychological safety.

We also discuss how using approaches such as non-violent communication can help the Scrum Master create an open environment that is also psychologically safe.

Featured Book of the Week: Sooner Safer Happier, by Jonathan Smart

In this segment, Meena Venkataraman recommends the book “Sooner Safer Happier: Antipatterns and Patterns for Business Agility” by Jonathan Smart as a valuable resource for scrum masters. She notes that as a scrum master, it’s important to have a holistic view of agile and to be “T-Shaped” – understanding the various facets of product development. Meena highlights that the book brings the 12 principles of agile to life and is a resource she refers to often.

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 Meena Venkataraman

Meena is an Agile & Lean coach who helps organizations and teams transition to Agile ways of working. She is passionate about the neuroscience behind team dynamics and is interested in organizational design and the application of Agile principles across different business domains. Meena enjoys speaking at conferences and is an avid learner.

You can link with Meena Venkataraman on LinkedIn.

BONUS: Product Owner, the critical role we don’t pay enough attention to

In this episode, Vasco explores the Product Owner role and how it can become a key obstacle for the team’s success. Vasco covers the 3 key constituencies that Product Owner needs to serve, as well as one key responsibility that is often left behind by many Product Owners.

In this episode, we talk about the upcoming Product Owner Summit. If you are interested in being part of the volunteer team for the PO summit, you can email us at podcast@oikosofy.com

What do you think of this perspective on the Product Owner role? Leave us a comment below, or send us your thoughts at podcast@oikosofy.com

 

About Vasco Duarte

Author of http://NoEstimatesBook.com, and daily podcast host at https://scrum-master-toolbox.org/. I try to give back to the community every single day in an effort to improve the IT and product industry all over the world.
Product Manager, Scrum Master, Project Manager, Director, Agile Coach are only some of the roles that I’ve taken in software development organizations. Having worked in the software industry since 1997, and Agile practitioner since 2004. I’ve worked in small, medium and large software organizations as an Agile Coach or leader in agile adoption at those organizations.

Stacey Taurah: Counterintuitive! When an Agile team of A-players started acting like a team of C-players! 

This team had people with an excellent technical background, and they were all driven and focused on delivering. It was therefore a surprise to see how the team started to act disengaged, and to see how the team was unable to deliver. When looking into it, Stacey found out that the team – even if it was filled with great people – was not working as a team. Listen in to learn about what drove this team apart!

In this segment, we refer to the Impostor Syndrome, a phenomenon that Scrum Masters often need to deal with.

Featured Book of the Week: The Goal by Godratt

In The Goal by Godratt (already mentioned in previous episodes), Stacey found important tips and lessons on how to have conversations about planning and resourcing with the whole business, and to understand that sometimes, what seems like a blocker can be solved by using the Five Focusing Steps of Theory Of Constraints.

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 Stacey Taurah

A seasoned agile coach with a squiggly line into tech and delivery. From forensics to frameworks and all that’s in between.

You can link with Stacey Taurah on LinkedIn.

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Avoid scope creep! And learn to scope projects around impacts and outcomes, not requirements!
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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
NEW! FREE Product Owner Mini-Summit
Join us for this new Mini-Summit featuring seven pre-recorded sessions handpicked from our most popular past events.
NEW! FREE Product Owner Mini-Summit
Join us for this new Mini-Summit featuring seven pre-recorded sessions handpicked from our most popular past events.