Carsten Lützen: Can you explain why your work matters? A success definition for Scrum Masters

Beyond the necessary assessment of what happens in the team when the Scrum Master “gets hit by a bus”, there are a few other things that Carsten looks at to assess his success as a Scrum Master. We explore the relationship between team and PO, as well as how well the team understands why what they are developing matters, and is valuable!

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: The Retro Wheel, a new format

As Carsten puts it when we start recording: “the best Retro format is ‘a new one’”. Nevertheless, he also has a favorite format, one that makes conversations easy, and helps the team generate positive collaboration energy. His favorite format is “The Retro Wheel”, a starfish retrospective format with one addition: appreciative feedback. 

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 Carsten Lützen

Carsten is an Agile Coach at the LEGO Group. Before that a Scrum Master for different teams. He has a deep love of graphical facilitation and professional coaching. Besides his full-time job, he shares weekly tips on YouTube and LinkedIn on Agile, Facilitation, and Coaching.

You can link with Carsten Lützen on LinkedIn and connect with Carsten Lützen on Twitter

Nancy Beers: Taking advantage of Agile Retrospectives BEFORE the retrospective takes place

While retrospectives are a critical part of the Sprint, and the team’s evolution over time, there’s a problem when “everything” gets discussed only in the retrospective. Nancy shares her perspective on the importance of team conversations during the Sprint, right when the events to be analyzed take place. 

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: “Get out of your head” retrospectives

Nancy is an avid gamer, and regularly adapts and creates games to help her in her work with teams. In this segment, we talk about how we can use certain games to help teams “get out of their head”, and learn to listen to the emotions caused by certain events in the sprint. 

In this segment, we refer to Rory Story Cubes, a fun tool we can use to help teams be more creative in analysing the events of the Sprint. 

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 Nancy Beers

Nancy says she is here to change the world one game at a time. She plays with people to learn or unlearn things. This can either be hard skills or soft skills (aka. Human skills)

You can link with Nancy Beers on LinkedIn and connect with Nancy Beers on Twitter.

Dahm Hongchai: Learning to listen deeply for Scrum Masters

As we dive into the definition of success, we learn about the skill of Deep Listening. Dahm walks us through how that skill can help Scrum Masters bring the team to understand each other better, and learn to collaborate effectively. 

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: Continue / Stop / Start

Dahm likes this simple format because it helps people open up with the help of facilitation. The format is simple to explain and facilitate for Scrum Masters, and can help them focus on helping the team members start, and continue their conversation. 

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 Dahm Hongchai

Dahm Hongchai is an Agile coach, a Scrum Master, and a business consultant with 5 years of experience in high-tech and Startup industries in Silicon Valley, Thailand, and Australia. He was the first Thai to become a Scrum Trainer (ST) with Scrum Inc. Dahm also has 10+ years of experience with other approaches such as Lean Manufacturing and Six Sigma. And he is an Agile trainer and helps people to understand Agile via, for example, Agile Cooking.

You can link with Dahm Hongchai on LinkedIn

Raj Solanki: What is Scrum team success, and how it relates to the Scrum Master’s success

Raj’s definition of success starts with the team. He defines what success looks like for the team, and how he focuses on helping teams reach that success. In this episode, we also discuss how team-velocity is a factor of many variables, not only the work that team does.

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: The standard “what went well” format with a twist

Raj starts by describing the “What went well/not so well” format and adds a twist, a set of practices to help the team get started with the discussion and ends with an appreciation exercise. Listen in, to learn how Raj improves on the standard retrospective format. 

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 Raj Solanki

Raj is a Manager, Technical program manager as well as Scrum master. He focuses on helping the teams learn about Agile, overcoming obstacles, foster a collaborative community, and more. 

He constantly reads about agile and seeks out coaches when he feels stuck. He seeks constant feedback and helps teams be transparent and build trust.

You can link with Raj Solanki on LinkedIn and connect with Raj Solanki on Twitter.

Ademar Perez: How to unlock your team’s potential

Ademar’s perspective on success brings the idea of unlocking the potential of the team. We discuss what might be the things that need to be in place before we can help the team reach their potential. Finally, we discuss what Scrum Masters can do to help teams along their journey. 

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: The Sailboat Retrospective

In this episode, we revisit the Sailboat Retrospective, a format that is a favorite for many Scrum Masters. We explore how we can use that format to help set up a new project or analyze something that happened recently. 

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 Ademar Perez

Ademar Perez is cultivating high-performing product teams as an Agile Coach at Xero. He fell in love with the Agile way of working after seeing 5 to 6 scrum teams collaborate to develop a customer-facing application. Since then, Ademar has helped over 30+ teams become self-organizing and high-performing.

You can link with Ademar Perez on LinkedIn.

Mustafa Ergun: The Scrum Master’s success from 3 different perspectives

Mustafa looks at three different aspects of the Scrum Master work to define what success looks like. From these aspects he suggests we ask specific questions to evaluate the team’s situation and progress over time. Listen in to learn about these 3 different aspects, and how to incorporate these into your regular reflection as a Scrum Master. 

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: Breaking Bad Retrospective

Mustafa focuses on formats that help the team be fully engaged in sharing insights, questions, and learnings. He suggests we focus on helping teams share via games, and suggests a TV series based retrospective: “The Breaking Bad Agile Retrospective”. Listen in to learn how Mustafa introduces and facilitates retrospectives based on TV series. 

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 Mustafa Ergun

Mustafa is an experienced Scrum Master. He has a passion for helping individuals and organizations see their potential and make things better. His current focus is on improving teams’ performance through insightful facilitation. Mustafa is always eager to learn, share his experience with others and enjoys seeing people succeed.

You can link with Mustafa Ergun on LinkedIn and connect with Mustafa Ergun on Twitter.

Pascal Clarkson: Helping teams own, and measure their own success

In Pascal’s perspective, Scrum Masters can be successful if they help the teams be comfortable with change, and feel accountable for their delivery. In order to get there, we must help teams know what success means (they need to be part of defining it) and measure it (help them do it!) In this segment, we also refer to the “what could go wrong” retrospective exercise. 

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: Questions that generate conversations

In this segment, we talk about a simple concept: “helping teams have a conversation”. Pascal shares some of the tips and questions he uses when helping teams get started with the improvement conversation we hope to trigger in every retrospective. 

Pascal also shares a critical tip on how to handle the situation when the team does not go along with your plan in the retrospective. Don’t miss it!  

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 Pascal Clarkson

Pascal has a bachelor degree in computer science. After years of working as a software engineer and having 8+ years of practical experience with the Scrum Framework, he has shifted his attention towards group facilitation. He uses Systemic Modelling and other methods to support groups in their discovery of how they can be the best version of themselves.

You can link with Pascal Clarkson on LinkedIn and connect with Pascal Clarkson on Twitter

You can also follow Pascal’s writings on Artocraft.nl.

Tomo Lennox: Customer-delight as the success KPI, and how to measure end-to-end success

Tomo suggests we consider “customer-delight”, the measure of success. However, that is hard to measure. In this episode, we explore how we might be able to measure “customer delight” and mention some “end-to-end” tools we can use to help the teams be aware that their work only produces value after team-external activities are completed. 

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: The Best Story this sprint

Tomo starts by recommending we always have more than one format ready to go when preparing a retrospective. However, we explore “The Best Story” retrospective format that helps team members talk about their work. In this segment, we also refer to the “mood-graph” (aka Journey Lines for the Sprint). 

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 Tomo Lennox

Tomo has 20 years of experience in project management, both waterfall, and Agile. A few years ago he was at David Anderson’s first Kanban Conference and has been a fanatic ever since, even though he has lost several jobs as a result of it. Tomo became then an advocate for projection over guessing, and reactive planning.

You can link with Tomo Lennox on LinkedIn and connect with Tomo Lennox on Twitter.

Dov Tsal: Defining success as a dynamic benchmark, that follows the team’s evolution

When it comes to defining success for a Scrum Master, Dov suggests we think of it as the success of a parent. Where the perspective, and the actions we take change constantly because the team (like a child) is also continuously evolving and changing. In this segment, we share many tips on how to review and assess our performance as Scrum Masters. 

Featured Retrospective Format of the Week: The Silent Retrospective

Dov introduces the “silent retrospective”, an approach he takes to help the team reflect and share their insights in a way that allows all to share their views and thoughts. We also talk about how to prepare and facilitate the “silent 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 Dov Tsal

Dov Tsal is a versatile agile coach, scrum-master, change-agent, and enabler, helping companies teams, and individuals to make an impact. Dov is also the creator of the #MeetingSpicer, a coaching tool to hack meeting culture. He is also the co-creator of The Agile Tao Podcast about understanding agility through the Taoist prism.

You can link with Dov Tsal on LinkedIn.

Kyla MacDonald: Measuring the impact of a team of Agile Coaches

Kyla was working with a team of coaches, and they defined their vision as “We exist to support teams to deliver more value, more frequently with more ease and more delight”. This helped them accept that they were always there to push the teams forward and then again move forward. To ensure they kept themselves accountable, they needed to keep score for themselves as a team of coaches. Listen in to learn how they measured themselves and the impact they had on the teams they worked with.

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: The 3 V’s

Kyla shares the 3V’s format, where the team discusses Value, Velocity and Vitality! This format helped her introduce the concept of fulfillment and how the work we do has many dimensions. 

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 Kyla MacDonald

Kyla imagines a world where the talk at Friday drinks is all about the great things we achieved in the week, what we learned, and what we can try next. As she puts it, people who find satisfaction, meaning, fun, and growth in their work, will naturally be in a better position to find the same in their home life. The thing that excites Kyla the most about agile is how concepts and principles apply to any and every area of your life. Which for her is running, paragliding and life on her hobby farm (they call it a lifestyle block in NZ).

You can link with Kyla MacDonald on LinkedIn and connect with Kyla MacDonald on Twitter.