If something worked in the past, it must work with new teams in the future. Or must it? In this episode we explore how the system around the team significantly affect what works in practice. The same daily meeting format may have worked in some teams before, but how is this new team’s context affecting the format of the daily meeting? As Scrum Masters we must be aware of the team culture, the management culture, the technical tools and other critical system conditions. Only then can we know what might work, and what will not work in that team’s context.
Miguel is a Brazilian living in Germany and currently Scrum Master for two teams at NewStore. He believes that there is no single methodology (agile or not) to lead projects and teams to success. Because of that, he would like Scrum Masters to be less biased when working with their teams.
When looking at the systemic causes for problems we see in the team, we need to take into account many aspects: trust, metrics, conversations, relationships. Where to start? Richard suggests that we look at the Comparative Agile diagnostic and the Agile Fluency model and diagnostic. But of course, those are just starting points. A lot of the work needed to identify systemic problems is to listen to the conversations happening in the team, and with stakeholders. In this episode, Richard describes the process he uses to observe and analyze the conversations happening in the team, so that he can pinpoint systemic problems.
About Richard Kasperowski
Richard is a speaker, trainer, coach, and author focused on high-performance teams. Richard is the author of The Core Protocols: A Guide to Greatness. He leads clients in building great teams that get great results using the Core Protocols, Agile, and Open Space Technology. Richard created and teaches the class Agile Software Development at Harvard University. Learn more and subscribe to Richard’s newsletter at www.kasperowski.com.
When a transition to Agile is ongoing there are a lot of aspects that are new to the organization. Those aspects may lead to problems later that are seen as “change resistance”. Krisztina shares with us an adoption approach that is quite different: All-in change. She describes her own journey and the benefits she observed in using that approach.
About Krisztina Sajgo-Kalo
Krisztina is a Senior IT manager with experience in several aspects of IT management on different levels as well as methodologies used. Originally from Hungary, she has worked in many countries. First as a tester, then a project manager, test manager, and many other roles.
Are the team members afraid? Do you hear a lot of “blame” words, or “us against them” comments? This may be because some of the patterns that Viyoma describes are active in your organization. Listen to this episode to find out what those patterns are and how Viyoma tackled them in the past.
About Viyoma Sachdeva
Viyoma has over 11 years of experience in Software and Product development across different domains and phases of software development cycle. She is a certified Scrum Master and Product Owner and has worked in an Agile delivery model for the last 6 years. Her experience includes many different domains like Marketing, manufacturing, retail and Public sector and she has worked in a patent of Epidemic disease predictions.
Viyoma believes that the Agile mindset and practices are keys to solve complex problems.
System conditions are patterns that happen over and over again in organizations but the teams can’t solve on their own. With Susan, we explore an approach that can help us detect those anti-patterns that can be traced back to the system, the policies, and rules set up in that organization. In this episode, we discuss a pattern of behavior in teams that can help us pinpoint the system conditions they struggle with.
About Susan McIntosh
Susan McIntosh is an agile coach and scrum master, especially interested in training and agile transformations – both fast and slow. She finds analogies to improving workplace culture in her experience in theater, teaching, cooking, and parenting. Susan is an active participant in the agile community in Denver, Colorado.
System conditions come in many shapes and forms. In this episode, we talk about the impact of communication (or lack thereof) on the system. We discuss the case of a team that had information withheld from them, and what that led to. And Sebastian shares some great teams on how to handle the expectations of stakeholders and the teams we work with.
About Sebastian Hitzler
Sebastian works as a dedicated Scrum Master for two delivery teams at Fidor Solutions in Munich. The team members are from 10 different countries and spread into 3 different locations in Germany, Spain and Ukraine. Fidor enables clients to become digital banks based on their ecosystem. Sebastian also works with the wider organization to help them transform with lean and agile.
Scrum Masters are familiar with the 3 pillars of Scrum or the values that are at the core of Scrum. In this episode we discuss how focusing on those 3 pillars of scrum, the Scrum Masters can help make the system conditions visible. The system conditions are the things we must focus on uncovering and help change to enable the adoption of Agile and Scrum in the organization. After all, Scrum and Agile transformation are not easy!
About Barry Overeem
Barry, the learning facilitator as he calls his blog, considers himself a 100% Scrum Master. It’s such a comprehensive and interesting role that he gives it his full focus and keeps learning and discovering new aspects every day!
“Culture eats process for breakfast” goes the quote. Culture is one of the big aspects of the system of work we interact with, so we need to be aware of what are the cultural trends in the organizations and teams we work with. What are those? Joe discusses with us methods and practices to identify the “cultural markers” that can help us, as Scrum Masters, understand the system we need to interact with.
About Joe Anderson
Joe is a Scrum Master at a small travel technology company with a passion for bringing out the best in people and building deep relationships. He works hard to foster an environment of safety, fun and learning with a focus on relentless improvement.
When joining a new team or organization we need to be aware of what is going on before we can start our efforts to help the organization. How can we do that? Arif shares with us 3 tools he uses regularly that help him understand the system and define his next actions as a Scrum Master.
About Arif Bobat
Arif is an experienced Scrum Master with a passion for enabling teams to achieve their potential, Arif loves challenging situations. In the last 5 years, he has been made redundant twice and fired twice. He is not afraid of speaking up when he sees anti-patterns and/or a lack of willingness to change behaviors.
System conditions – which affect our teams, but are outside their control – are not always simple to tackle, but with this question, they will at least be simple to detect. In this episode, Donald shares with us a very powerful question when it comes to understanding what is affecting the teams we work with but is outside their power of influence.
We also discuss some of the anti-patterns that teams get stuck in when they don’t tackle the system conditions that affect them.
About Donald Ewart
For more than 10 years, Don has been a scrum master and coach working in different sectors in London and across the UK as an independent consultant.
With a background of 10+ years in several development roles for web and finance systems, Donald has a good technical knowledge of modern development techniques, and can quickly build rapport and respect with development teams, understanding their issues and helping them to find the right solutions.