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Annu Paganus: Transparency and Collaboration, Critical Aspects Of Scrum Master Success

Annu reflects on the various facets contributing to a Scrum Master’s sense of accomplishment. She emphasizes the importance of increased transparency in team operations, noting that it requires conscious effort. Annu also stresses the need for fostering collaboration in agile teams, as some may naturally gravitate towards independent work. Monitoring and addressing collaboration pain points is key. Additionally, she considers the ability to step back as an indicator of success in enabling the team’s self-organization and autonomy.

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: Efficient Reflections, The Mad/Sad/Glad With A Twist

Annu discusses her preferred retrospective format, conducted through an online shared whiteboard tool. The tool enables efficient tracking of action points and ensures visibility. Annu appreciates the flexibility to vary retrospective content. She often incorporates emotion-related questions, exemplified by the Mad/Sad/Glad format. Annu recommends enhancing this format by adding an additional topic, such as the release process, to deepen discussions.

How can I, as a Scrum Master, supercharge my facilitation?

Retrospectives, planning sessions, vision workshops, we are continuously helping teams learn about how to collaborate in practice! In this Actionable Agile Tools book, Jeff Campbell shares some of the tools he’s learned over a decade of coaching Agile Teams. The pragmatic coaching book you need, right now! Buy Actionable Agile Tools on Amazon, or directly from the author, and supercharge your facilitation toolbox!

About Annu Paganus

Annu is a passionate software team Scrum Master who wants to help her team to create an environment where different kind of people can find a smooth way to work together and enjoy their work and private life. Also worked as teacher, software developer, chapter lead and Product Owner.

You can link with Annu Paganus on LinkedIn.

Anna Mbengam: Strategies for Navigating Difficult Conversations, Solving Conflicts, And Coaching Scrum Teams

In this episode, Anna shares a scenario where a team grappled with a fear of conflict. She emphasizes the need to step back and listen attentively, advising against cornering teams during discussions on sensitive topics. Anna highlights how team members confided in her privately, often about cultural disparities. She offers practical tips, such as gauging comfort levels for public discussions and maintaining confidentiality. Anna advocates for transparency, suggesting collaboration with the Product Owner to demonstrate openness and acknowledge mistakes. Additional advice includes fostering trust, utilizing icebreakers to bridge diverse perspectives, and encouraging active leadership within the team.

Featured Book For The Week: Coaching for Success: Integrating ‘The Five Dysfunctions’ and ‘Agile Coaching’

In this episode, Anna delves into the influential book ‘The Five Dysfunctions of a Team’, emphasizing its role in recognizing and mitigating detrimental behavioral patterns within teams. She highlights the fear of conflict as a particularly crucial aspect. Anna stresses the importance of active listening and avoiding cornering teams during discussions on challenging topics. Additionally, she introduces ‘Agile Coaching’ by Rachel Davies as another valuable resource for enhancing team dynamics and performance in agile environments.

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 Anna Mbengam

Anna, an accomplished Scrum Master and SAFe Coach since 2018, thrives in diverse industries like Personal Investments, Healthcare, Food & beverage, and Banking. She’s authored 5 self-published guides aiding aspiring Scrum Masters, and her mentoring has transformed 200+ professionals into highly effective individuals for any organization.

You can link with Anna Mbengam on LinkedIn and read Anna’s books.

Takunda Noha: From Paper to Practice, Addressing Accountability and Discipline Issues in Agile Projects

In this episode, Takunda shares his experience as the scrum master for a team that supported the HR department and developed an HR platform. While the team seemed successful on paper, they struggled with discipline and frequently missed their sprint goals. Takunda attributes these challenges to a lack of accountability for not delivering on promises. He recommends the book The Five Dysfunctions of a Team by Patrick Lencioni, which helped him understand and address these issues, emphasizing the team’s avoidance of conflict and lack of focus on results. He highlights the importance of ensuring that the team feels alive and engaged.

Featured Book of the Week: The Servant Leader, How to Build a Creative Team, Develop Great Morale, and Improve Bottom-Line Performance by James Autry

In this segment, Takunda discusses his transition from being a project management professional (PMP) to a scrum master, which he describes as a significant change. He recommends the book The Servant Leader by James Autry, highlighting its impact on his understanding of the scrum master role. The book emphasizes the importance of emotional intelligence in building connections and unlocking influence. Takunda shares that this book helped him develop a deeper understanding of how to effectively serve his team. In this segment, we also mention another recommended book, How to Win Friends, And Influence People by Dale Carnegie, which provides insights into building relationships and fostering positive interactions with the Scrum Master’s critical stakeholders.

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 Takunda Noha

Takunda is a seasoned change agent. He specializes in turning dysfunctional teams into high performing teams.

You can link with Takunda Noha on LinkedIn.

Johannes Lindman: Failing Safely, Tips for Successfully Implementing Extreme Programming in a Team Environment

In this podcast episode, Johannes shares his experience with extreme programming and test-driven development. Johannes recounts his experience working with a team where he assumed a lot of things about their needs and desires. He quickly realized that his eagerness to bring his own value to the table was getting in the way of the team’s success. Johannes learned that it is essential to listen and watch the team and to ensure that they are asking for help rather than assuming that he knew what they needed. He advises that it is essential to slow down, be humble, and not be pushy.

Johannes also shares several tips for helping teams to fail safely, turning up the volume on transparency, and showing small failures. He notes that it is important to reflect on what is happening and to determine if the possible failure is catastrophic or not. If it is not catastrophic, then it is best to let it go and be patient for the right moment.

The inspiring story of how a failing hospital turned things around with Agile and Lean

Recovering from failure, or difficult moments is a critical skill for Scrum Masters. Not only because of us, but also because the teams, and stakeholders we work with will also face these moments! We need inspiring stories to help them, and ourselves! The Bungsu Story, is an inspiring story by Marcus Hammarberg which shows how a Coach can help organizations recover even from the most disastrous situations! Learn how Marcus helped The Bungsu, a hospital in Indonesia, recover from near-bankruptcy, twice! Using Lean and Agile methods to rebuild an organization and a team! An inspiring story you need to know about! Buy the book on Amazon: The Bungsu Story – How Lean and Kanban Saved a Small Hospital in Indonesia. Twice. and Can Help You Reshape Work in Your Company.

About Johannes Lindman

Despite many years of experience Johannes still learns new things every day in order to stay relevant. This aligns with his curiosity on life and people.

You can link with Johannes Lindman on LinkedIn.

Gemma Murray: Maximizing Impact of Agile Coaching at Moo, Feedback and Measurement Strategies

In this episode, Gemma discusses her work as an agile coach at Moo and how they measure the impact they have on the organization. She emphasizes that feedback is important but measurement helps us reflect and grow. When it comes to defining success, she shares that to measure the impact of their coaching, the coaches at Moo use engagement surveys that touch on Scrum values and use one or two of the survey questions to build their agile coach OKR’s. These metrics provide a lagging indicator but at the same time, they help the coaches define shorter term actions, and metrics, and eventually the OKR’s help measure their impact on a longer time scale.

In addition to using engagement surveys, they also use collaboration questions for which they ask an evaluation on a 1-5 scale to measure the level of collaboration among teams towards a shared goal. The collaboration questions align with their OKR’s as Agile Coaches and help them to see the impact they are having on the organization.

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: Simplifying Agile Retrospectives to amplify their impact on Scrum teams

In this segment, Gemma shares her favorite approach to conducting agile retrospectives. She emphasizes the importance of keeping the format simple, especially for new teams or teams that are adapting to retrospectives. Gemma shares one example, where she uses a smiley face column, a sad face column, and a question mark column to initiate a wide-ranging conversation and to capture various types of feedback and perspectives. To complement the conversation, she captures the action items that the team wants to put into practice, using frameworks such as CAT (Concrete, Attainable, Timely) and SMART. Gemma views retrospectives as a conversational format and emphasizes the importance of asking “what’s the next immediate step?” and making small changes that have a big impact. Additionally, she mentions the 15% solutions from liberating structures and Toyota Kata as helpful tools in facilitating agile retrospectives.

Retrospectives, planning sessions, vision workshops, we are continuously helping teams learn about how to collaborate in practice! In this Actionable Agile Tools book, Jeff Campbell shares some of the tools he’s learned over a decade of coaching Agile Teams. The pragmatic coaching book you need, right now! Buy Actionable Agile Tools on Amazon, or directly from the author, and supercharge your facilitation toolbox!

About Gemma Murray

Gemma works as an Agile Coach for MOO, a branding company whose vision is to provide ‘Great design for everyone’. Having worked in various change roles using both waterfall and agile approaches throughout her career, Gemma believes in the diversity of teams to unlock innovation, creativity and delivering value.

You can link with Gemma Murray on LinkedIn.

Get These Valuable Lessons Today!
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
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