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Scrum-master — coach and assistant of the Scrum Team. He ensures that the Team members shared values of Scrum, abided the rules of the framework and were the real teams in the spirit of “One for all and all for one.” He builds the real scrum and helps the company be flexible.
He is also responsible for the other people and the Team interaction. It helps to build relationships in such a way that they do not interfere with the Team. For example, the Scrum-master should intervene, if the manager enforces the Team to do work that is not mentioned in the Sprint Backlog.
The Scrum-master has no formal power, he does not specify or order. His task is to observe, give feedback, propose solutions to make the Teamwork as efficiently as possible.
Educates to work in Scrum
The simplest duty of the Scrum-master is to teach people to work according to the rules of Scrum. This means that the Scrum-master spends for most of the day with the Development Team and Product Owner. View more what and how he teaches them.
The Scrum-master helps the Development Team to become a self-organized and a cross-functional team. To do this, he grows the trust inside the Team, helps to solve conflicts and to work within the framework. He pays attention to the differences in the Team’s actions with the values of Scrum and gives feedback.
During working meetings the Scrum-master keeps track of time and organizes the process of productive work. Even experienced and self-organized teams, which can hold events of Scrum by themselves, work more effective with the Scrum-master. For the novice teams the Scrum-master is vital.
Imagine, the Scrum-master came in a big bank that decided to try Agile thinking. The atmosphere in the Team is so-so, the staff compete with each other and do not like when someone interferes in their work. What will the Scrum-master do?
Will do nothing. All are adults and can find out who is right by themselves.
Find out the reason of conflict. Will help to reach an agreement, if necessary.
The Scrum-master teaches the Product Owner to work according to the Scrum concepts, helps to organize the Product Backlog; creates the conditions in which the Product Owner and the Development Team understand each other and realize the scope of work should be done to achieve a common goal.
Helps a company to become flexible
The functions of the Scrum-master do not come to an end with staff training. A second important part is to help the entire organization to respond faster to market changes and customers ‘ preferences, that is, to become adaptive.
In fact, the cultivation of flexibility in the company is a long and painful process. The whole point of Agile is in his values, but the Product Owner and the Team sometimes have not enough time to think about it. The Scrum-master is a holder and a megaphone of values in the flexible management approaches. He runs the transformation of the company and does not allow it to go astray. If in a company there are some processes that violate the principles of Scrum,then just the Scrum-master finds them and advises on how to do it better.
The team, which invited our scrum master, is one of development departments in a big company. The Team does not have their own Product, they work in several directions. What will the Scrum-master do?
Will work with what they have. Because it is a long and expensive way to remake the entire company.
Thinks systematically and will offer the bosses to form the teams around real products, as, for example, “Google. Maps”.
We recommend you to hire one Scrum-master for each Team on full-time. Only then he will be able to work successfully and a company will get the result quicker.
How to become a Scrum-master
Usually they select the Scrum-master from the Team members, give him to read the Guide to Scrum and, at the best, sent him on training courses. We recommend you to invite the Scrum-master from outside. This is the best option, because such specialists have the experience, they are unbiased to the Team members and can honestly assess the situation in the company.
Prices and level of Scrum-masters’ experience on the market are different. We suggest to hire the most experienced, according to your budget. Conventionally all the candidates can be divided into five categories.
Beginner knows the Scrum Guide by heart.
Practitioner knows the basics of Team management, have an experience as a Scrum-master. Very often such Scrum-masters achieve formal compliance with the Scrum Guide, but work with the framework values badly. The transition to such “mechanical” scrum will bring the company very few results.
Master in his work starts from the values of Scrum, grows Agile culture in his teams. He creates a real Scrum in the company.
Coach teaches the practitioners, turns them to Masters, shares his experience with them. Can transform entire companies.
Evangelist is a Scrum-master of “God’s” level. He translates the values and principles of Scrum everywhere he reaches.
The Scrum-master is a guardian and holder of Scrum values in a company. He cultivates an Agile culture in the Team, establishes the right processes, helps the company to become flexible with minimal losses.
Next article we will continue to analyze the roles in Scrum. And now you can refresh your knowledge about the Product Owner role.
The Scrum-master is a coach and assistant of the Scrum Team. Ensures that Team members shared the Scrum values, knew the theory, followed the rules. The Scrum-master builds the real Scrum and helps the company to become flexible.