Inderdip Vraich: How to deal with conflict in the Scrum team caused by external pressure

Inderdip was working with multiple Scrum teams, and there were pressure and high expectations on the team. The high stakes led to micro-management, and suddenly the team – which was composed of competent and committed people – fell into hard conflict. The team was unhappy. This story taught Inderdip an important lesson of where to start when dealing with conflict caused by external pressure. 

Featured Book of the Week: The Art Of Doing Twice The Work In Half The Time, by Sutherland

In The Art Of Doing Twice The Work In Half The Time, by Sutherland, Inderdip found insightful lessons in every chapter, and stories of success from many different industries. Those lessons helped her to focus on actions, and learn to deal with unpredictability.

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 Inderdip Vraich

Inderdip is an Agile Coach and a Scrum Master based in New Zealand. She has been working in the agile space with IT teams since 2007. She believes in lifelong learning and derives deep satisfaction from working with teams & individuals and see them grow in their journey.

You can link with Inderdip Vraich on LinkedIn and connect with Inderdip Vraich on Twitter

David Wallace: When Agile teams care more about the product than its users

In this team, we could see the team members cared for the product they were working on. However, they cared so much, they started to allow themselves to “dive into the code and refactor” at will. Eventually, that care for the product was translated into an anti-pattern: caring more about the code, than the people using the product. Does your team care more about the product than the users? In this episode, we share some tips on how to handle that Agile anti-pattern of caring more for the product than the users.

Featured Book of the Week: The human side of Agile by Gil Broza

In The human side of Agile by Gil Broza, David found insights on how to focus on the people in the team, and the organization that is adopting Agile. The book helped David understand that, even if it is tempting to focus on the tools and processes, the core of Agile adoption is focusing on people. 

In the same vein, the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast published a book that is exactly about how to focus on people in your Agile adoption. If you want to know more, download your free chapters to Shift from Product to People, a book by Michael Dougherty and Pete Oliver-Krueger.

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 David Wallace

David Wallace is an agile coach with 25 years of experience in the IT industry. He’s a passionate Agilist and the cohost of the Heart of Agile – Boulder meetup group. He’s currently based in Denver as a Product Delivery Coach at Xero, a New Zealand-based cloud accounting software company. 

You can link with David Wallace on LinkedIn and connect with David Wallace on Twitter.

Richard Lizama: The order-taker Scrum team anti-pattern, and what to do about it

From the many Scrum team anti-patterns, Richard highlights the “order taker” anti-pattern. When the Scrum team accepts that the Product Owner knows everything, and gives them already pre-digested features they just need to deliver. In this episode, we discuss why some teams adopt this anti-pattern, and what we can do as Scrum Masters to help them understand what they are missing.

Featured Book of the Week: Scrum Mastery by Geoff Watts

The book Scrum Mastery by Geoff Watts, gave Richard that “aha!” moment he was looking for. In the book, Geoff Watts goes over the differences between doing a good job, and being a great Scrum Master and that helped Richard grow in the role of the Scrum Master. 

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 Richard Lizama

Before becoming a Scrum Master, Richard spent time as a college counselor, then a small business owner, then a tech support rep. Once he found Scrum and Agile, he knew it was where he needed to be.

You can link with Richard Lizama on LinkedIn

Mark Metze: Helping a Scrum team of introverts learn how to collaborate and engage 

When working with a team, Mark noticed that the team was composed mostly of people that preferred to work in silence. They were introverts. However, their desire for privacy started to affect the team’s performance. Mark started to think about how to create more engagement and communication in the team, and designed a working agreements session to help the team understand how their distance was starting to affect their performance.

Featured Book of the Week: The 8 Stances of a Scrum Master by Barry Overeem

In the 8 Stances of a Scrum Master whitepaper, Mark found a model to help him reflect on his career, and understand that even as a manager, Mark was performing some of the Scrum Master duties. The whitepaper, authored by Barry Overeem (a previous guest on the podcast), helped Mark understand the Scrum Master role in-depth.

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 Mark Metze

Following the pattern of all good Computer Science majors, Mark began his career as a programmer and devoted the first 2 decades of his career to the craft of writing code. His next decade was spent in a managerial role for a software team. And then recently he pivoted once again to the role of Scrum Master. Mark has a heart for leading through service and has enthusiastically embraced the role of Scrum Master.

You can link with Mark Metze on LinkedIn.

Med Marouane Ajraoui: Helping a large group of Agile teams learn to collaborate

Med Marouane joined a large organization to work on a big Agile transformation. He was working with more than 10 teams in a difficult environment. The teams had started doing their cross-team collaboration using the Scrum of Scrums pattern, but when Med Marouane attended the Scrum of Scrums, he noticed the teams were merely reporting to each other. And, most importantly, they were sharing excuses for what was not delivered, instead of working together to overcome the challenges they faced. 

Featured Book of the Week: Coaching Agile Teams by Lyssa Adkins

In Coaching Agile Teams by Lyssa Adkins, Med Marouanne found practices that helped him as a Scrum Master. The book also helped him reflect on how to shape his personal and work life so that it would be meaningful.

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 Med Marouane Ajraoui

Med Marouane Ajraoui enjoys practicing AIKIDO while helping individuals, teams, and organizations embrace the agile mindset. He is from Morocco but has lived in several countries, and he enjoys being a “citizen of the world”. He is the founder of Agile Africa, an NGO for disseminating Agile culture in Africa. He is also the CEO and founder of JediSquad, an international firm that supports developing Eco Agile businesses and meaningful digital products.

You can link with Med Marouane Ajraoui on LinkedIn

Artur Margonari: Helping teams to deal with conflict

In this team, there was a lot of finger-pointing and other toxic behaviors. The team was actively hiding the problems for fear of conflict. It was Artur’s job to help them deal with the conflict openly. But the journey would not be easy. In this episode, we talk about how to help teams learn to deal with conflict. 

In this episode, we refer to Non-violent communication, which has been a topic on the podcast before.

Featured Book of the Week: Coaching Agile Teams by Lyssa Adkins

Learning to be a coach, Artur learned a lot about coaching tools, behaviors and mindsets from Coaching Agile Teams by Lyssa Adkins. Additionally, this book helped Artur to move from a Project Manager to a Scrum Master mindset. 

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 Artur Margonari

Artur is a Brazilian living in Belgium since 2014. When not playing music, practicing martial arts, or traveling, he supports organizations in their agile and continuous improvement journey. He also just adopted a cat and a dog 🙂

You can link with Artur Margonari on LinkedIn and connect with Artur Margonari on Twitter.

Stephane Thanasack: From “running” retros to actually improving constantly, a story

This team worked on a product inside a big company. They delivered, and even held their retrospectives. However, they didn’t take action on the insights they collected from their retrospectives. This gave Stephane a memorable lesson: it’s not enough to “do all the ceremonies” to be Agile. And led Stephane to explore and learn how he could help teams benefit from retrospectives, to establish continuous improvement. 

Featured Book for the Week: Management 3.0 by Jurgen Appelo

Stephane found the book Management 3.0 by Jurgen Appelo “simple and brilliant”. It gave him a sense of what systems are, and Systems Thinking. As he describes it, the book was a “game changer”. 

In this segment, we also refer to the book Coaching Agile Teams by Lyssa Adkins

 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 Stephane Thanasack

Stephane works with Agile clients in France, where he lives. He’s also the co-founder of Nowshak, a consulting company helping organizations in their transformation journey. He’s a certified professional coach by the International Coaching Federation.

You can link with Stephane Thanasack on LinkedIn.

Ryan Brook: Are you letting bad behavior grow in your team? A warning for Scrum Masters

Ryan was working with a team that had responsibility over 6 different products. The team was underwater and overwhelmed by all the work that was coming at them. As Ryan describes it there was a Zebra and a Hippo in the team (see Animals of Product Management), which made the team afraid of making decisions and move forward. This segment ends with a warning for Scrum Masters: “are you letting the bad behavior grow in your team?”

Featured Book for the Week: The Hitchhiker’s Guide To Coaching by Agile42 consulting

Ryan was offered The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Coaching by a mentor of his at the time. The book helped him to go beyond the facilitation skills he already had, and focus on skills like Active Listening, and understanding the implications from working in the Complex Domain. That book was a lesson on truly focusing on being empirical in his work.

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 Ryan Brook

Ryan is a practicing Agile Coach and Scrum Master based in the UK. He is also the co-creator of Scrum Lake, a safe community of practice focused on story telling and deep exploration with Scrum Masters from around the World. He holds both the PSM III and PSPO III and is a candidate Professional Scrum Trainer for scrum.org.

You can link with Ryan Brook on LinkedIn. Or check Ryan’s website at optilearn.co.uk.

Carsten Lützen: What happens when Scrum Masters get too far from the teams they support

When Carsten started as a Scrum Master, he worked with a team of brilliant developers. The team worked well, and all seemed to function. However, soon after that, Carsten started working with a second team, and the problems started. Carsten found that he had let the team to its own devices, and grew apart from the team that had been working so well. Listen in to learn what happens when Scrum Masters get too far from the teams they are supposed to help! 

Featured Book of the Week: The Hitchhiker’s Guide To Coaching by Agile42 consulting

In The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Coaching, Carsten learned some important lessons about the coaching approach and why Scrum Masters must be aware of their different stances (teaching, mentoring, coaching, and more!)

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 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: Why the Scrum Master work with stakeholders is critical for the teams’ success

Nancy was working with a team that was high-energy and focused on delivering value. Every sprint they tried to ship software, but there was always something that was preventing them from releasing. Over time, the team and Nancy tried to bring that up with stakeholders, but all they got was “blame” for not delivering to production. And then the team lost it… Listen in to learn how teams may react when external blockers are identified, talked about, but never solved.

Featured Book of the Week: Three books to help you perfect the team’s routines and calendar

In this segment, we talk about 3 books that, as Nancy puts it, bring together 3 important lessons for Scrum Masters that try to help their teams perform. The books are: Drive by Daniel Pink, When by Daniel Pink, and Deep Work by Cal Newport. These books helped Nancy reconsider the cycle she sets up for her teams with the aim to help them perform better. In this segment, we also refer to Ayurveda, and Team Coaching. 

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 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