First time as Scrum Master?


Most of us start from somewhere, and that somewhere is God knows where. We all keep thinking on how to go about it. And if you are asked to lead it then its really crazy shit because everyone thinks you know it and you think that they know it but the matter of fact is nobody knows what anybody else knows or what to know. Wow that completely meets the very first criteria for any project to be agile. My mom always told me two solutions for any problem:

#1. Jab jaago tabhi savera: This means “As soon as you wake-up, consider it dawn”. Which means don’t waste time in regretting what you already have lost. Its never too late to do the right thing. Look at the problem in hand and think of a solution, no matter for how long you have been ignoring it. Think that you just got this issue in your hands. Past doesn’t exist as far as regretting is considered. We can always look back for learnings. So don’t worry about where you are standing on your agile project, let it be your first or seventh sprint, or how much time has lapsed in getting things officially on board. As soon as realize that all is not well or at least something is not, call for a quick retrospective meeting and try to find solution to the issues noted. But instead we let things go the way they are going because we feel that it too late, we can’t ask our team to change or tell management to get their nose out of an agile project. We fear that we will be held accountable for previous mistakes that everyone was doing. But trust me its totally OK. I realized that its wrong only after I did it once, and now I want to correct it, as SM its my job. Period.

#2. Shuru se shuru karo: This means “Start from the beginning”, from the very first page of book (She literally use to say this). Have you ever experienced lost in your journey? Did you ever feel like starting your day all over again? You get this feeling because nothing is working. Well those are the scenarios are generally result of working with a team which is completely out of sync. Even if your team claims that they know Agile and have been on a Scrum Project in past, there is no harm in organizing a training session. I generally call it “Let’s Catch-up” meeting, generally do it over coffee. First 15 minutes are about how is everybody and how did last night match go and who is top model these days, and then we talk about Scrum fundamentals, what do we know about scrum roles, artifacts and ceremonies. And if team sounds a little confused, I insist on taking a small training session. Always remember a quiz session in the end is very important, when a team looks at subject academically, they disassociate themselves from old beliefs which they might have accumulated over past Scrum projects, and started believing them to be the correct fundamentals. Then you discuss answers to that quiz. From here team gets in to receptive mode, this new Scrum Master gets a little acceptance in the team. And from here it depends on your talent on how good you are in taking your people along, how you win their trust and never let them down.

I think that’s all for tonight. Will be back again with more from my world.

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4 thoughts on “First time as Scrum Master?”

  1. Interesting article. I think while we keep the scrum protocols in sight, the scrum master should develop the right attitude which certainly will keep the team ticking. The attitude to be ‘positive’. And this article certainly establishes this fact.


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