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Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast

Every week day, Certified Scrum Master, Agile Coach and Business Consultant Vasco Duarte interviews Scrum Masters and Agile Coaches from all over the world to get you actionable advice, new tips and tricks, improve your craft as a Scrum Master with daily doses of inspiring conversations with Scrum Masters from the all over the world. Stay tuned for BONUS episodes when we interview Agile gurus and other thought leaders in the business space to bring you the Agile Business perspective you need to succeed as a Scrum Master. Some of the topics we discuss include: Agile Business, Agile Strategy, Retrospectives, Team motivation, Sprint Planning, Daily Scrum, Sprint Review, Backlog Refinement, Scaling Scrum, Lean Startup, Test Driven Development (TDD), Behavior Driven Development (BDD), Paper Prototyping, QA in Scrum, the role of agile managers, servant leadership, agile coaching, and more!
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Now displaying: January, 2018
Jan 31, 2018

In many organizations there is a history with Agile. Some might have already tried a few waves of Agile and are affected by the past results. So how do we help teams that “don’t like” Agile? Or Scrum? In this episode we explore what it might look like to introduce Scrum without mentioning the technical terms we often associate with Scrum.

In this episode we refer to the Scrum Master Toolbox BONUS episode with Johanna Rothman.

 

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.

You can link with Richard Kasperowski on LinkedIn and connect with Richard Kasperowski on Twitter.

Jan 30, 2018

The 1-on-1 meetings are a staple of management practice today. But are they really a great idea when we develop software as teams? In this episode we discuss a case that illustrates why the 1-on-1 meetings are not really a good idea when you want to solve intra-team conflict.

In this episode we talk about the Check-in Protocol, one of the Core Protocols to which we refer regularly in this series of interviews with Richard.

 

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.

You can link with Richard Kasperowski on LinkedIn and connect with Richard Kasperowski on Twitter.

Jan 29, 2018

As team members, Scrum Masters, employers, managers we tend to keep a lot of information confidential. But can we really function well as  teams when the default behavior is to hide information? In this episode we explore the consequences of hiding information from the team or your colleagues.

In this episode we refer to the original eXtreme Programming Explained book, by Kent Beck and Cynthia Andres.

 

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.

You can link with Richard Kasperowski on LinkedIn and connect with Richard Kasperowski on Twitter.

Jan 26, 2018

It is clear that teams need trust in each other, and from others to be able to work effectively. But what is behind the lack on trust in some teams? In this episode we explore the lack of trust as a symptom of systemic problems that we need to look into. Listen in to learn the story that informed this insight, and what to do about it.

 

About Kimberley Miller

During the day, Kimberley is the Scrum Master at Hudl with over 5 years of experience in helping to implement Scrum in both software companies and standard business units. Kimberley is also an actress on stage and film, with a Masters in Performance from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.

You can link with Kimberley Miller on LinkedIn and connect with Kimberley Miller on Twitter.

Jan 25, 2018

In this episode Kimberley explains how she uses the Squad Health Check with her teams, and how that drives her to reach a successful outcome with the teams that she works with.

Listen in to learn about the changes Kimberley applied to the now famous Spotify Squad Health Check, based on her own experience.

 

About Kimberley Miller

During the day, Kimberley is the Scrum Master at Hudl with over 5 years of experience in helping to implement Scrum in both software companies and standard business units. Kimberley is also an actress on stage and film, with a Masters in Performance from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.

You can link with Kimberley Miller on LinkedIn and connect with Kimberley Miller on Twitter.

Jan 24, 2018

In this episode Kimberley introduces a “themed” retrospective, the Christmas Carol Retrospective. A format that first perfectly the need to reflect on the past, but quickly change to focus on the future, and what we want to learn or improve. She used this format to help drive a change in organization that was required for the team to succeed.

 

About Kimberley Miller

During the day, Kimberley is the Scrum Master at Hudl with over 5 years of experience in helping to implement Scrum in both software companies and standard business units. Kimberley is also an actress on stage and film, with a Masters in Performance from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.

You can link with Kimberley Miller on LinkedIn and connect with Kimberley Miller on Twitter.

Jan 23, 2018

We value delivering a quality product over meeting a deadline. There’s no such value in the Agile Manifesto, but maybe there should be! In this episode we explore the consequences that afflict teams who decide to focus on delivery instead of delivering a quality product. And there are many, many consequences that lead to problems...

About Kimberley Miller

During the day, Kimberley is the Scrum Master at Hudl with over 5 years of experience in helping to implement Scrum in both software companies and standard business units. Kimberley is also an actress on stage and film, with a Masters in Performance from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.

You can link with Kimberley Miller on LinkedIn and connect with Kimberley Miller on Twitter.

Jan 22, 2018

I’m sure you’ve seen it before. The project is approved with a set of requirements, and the team is given the “list of requirements” (maybe as a requirements document even!) and told to estimate and deliver.

Now, let’s not beat around the bush, this is not Agile. There’s no adaptability, there’s no inspect & adapt, the team has little chance to bring their creativity into the project. So, what is a Scrum Master to do?

Listen in to learn what Kimberley did, and what she learned from it.

In this episode we refer to Improv Theatre and how it may improve the team work.

 

About Kimberley Miller

During the day, Kimberley is the Scrum Master at Hudl with over 5 years of experience in helping to implement Scrum in both software companies and standard business units. Kimberley is also an actress on stage and film, with a Masters in Performance from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.

You can link with Kimberley Miller on LinkedIn and connect with Kimberley Miller on Twitter.

Jan 20, 2018

Many Scrum Masters have a past in Project Management. The growing adoption of Agile has brought Agile and Scrum to the attention of many Project Management Organizations (PMOs) in larger (and in some small) organizations.

The PMO was the traditional “execution” office of organizations. Governing the starting, financing, and reporting of projects.

With a growing adoption of Scrum for software development that has changed.

In this episode we talk with Tanner Wortham, who spend 10 years in the US Marines and ended up in a project management job. Like many of us, his company started adopting Scrum and he became the Scrum Master.

About Tanner Wortham

Tanner is the author of a popular agile blog at www.SpikesAndStories.com. He's helped many organizations in their journey toward agility and currently works at LinkedIn. He's been accused that his military training would mold him into a rigid, unmoving Scrum Master, but nothing could be further from the truth. What civilians call agile, the Corps calls leading Marines, and it’s through his experiences as a Marine that he derives most of his insight as a Scrum Master.

You can link with Tanner Wortham on LinkedIn and connect with Tanner Wortham on Twitter.

Jan 19, 2018

We begin by sharing some of the anti-patterns that are caused by systemic problems, and then dive into 4 perspectives that help Christiaan identify and understand systemic problems.

 

About Christiaan Verwijs

Christiaan is passionate about building awesome products and creating motivating workplaces. He has extensive experience in both software engineering (b.Ec) and organisational psychology (M.Sc). He does this through his company Agilistic, where he helps, train and coach organizations.

You can link with Christiaan Verwijs on LinkedIn and connect with Christiaan Verwijs on Twitter.

You can also follow Christiaan’s blog at Blog.agilistic.nl.

Jan 18, 2018

If we want to reduce the definition of success to one metric, then it is hard to argue with the “level of self-organization”. And that simple metric means so much, it drives so much of the improvements we want to see in the teams and organizations we work with.

In this episode we review why that might be the most important metric for us to follow-up on regularly, and what that means in practice. Including signs that self-organization is happening.

 

About Christiaan Verwijs

Christiaan is passionate about building awesome products and creating motivating workplaces. He has extensive experience in both software engineering (b.Ec) and organisational psychology (M.Sc). He does this through his company Agilistic, where he helps, train and coach organizations.

You can link with Christiaan Verwijs on LinkedIn and connect with Christiaan Verwijs on Twitter.

You can also follow Christiaan’s blog at Blog.agilistic.nl.

Jan 17, 2018

We see Scrum be used more and more to help manage teams in all industries. In this episode we explore a story of how a Scrum Master, Christiaan, helped a CEO step back and allow the team to flourish. This helped both the CEO and the team, and as a result the company achieve success.

In this episode we discuss some of the lessons from a previous BONUS episode with David Marquet, author of Turn the Ship Around!

 

About Christiaan Verwijs

Christiaan is passionate about building awesome products and creating motivating workplaces. He has extensive experience in both software engineering (b.Ec) and organisational psychology (M.Sc). He does this through his company Agilistic, where he helps, train and coach organizations.

You can link with Christiaan Verwijs on LinkedIn and connect with Christiaan Verwijs on Twitter.

You can also follow Christiaan’s blog at Blog.agilistic.nl.

Jan 16, 2018

Sometimes it is hard to keep the team focused in the ceremonies that we facilitate. That’s ok, and predictable. However, as Scrum Masters we must be ready for it. We must be ready to regain the attention of the team on the issue at hand. Remember, the ceremonies are there for a reason. If they feel boring, or long, then they are probably not being used to tackle the important topics in the team’s mind.

In this episode we also talk about a facilitation book: Liberating Structures by Henri Lipmanowicz and Keith McCandless, and discuss one of the facilitation techniques that Christiaan learned from that and still applies today.

 

About Christiaan Verwijs

Christiaan is passionate about building awesome products and creating motivating workplaces. He has extensive experience in both software engineering (b.Ec) and organisational psychology (M.Sc). He does this through his company Agilistic, where he helps, train and coach organizations.

You can link with Christiaan Verwijs on LinkedIn and connect with Christiaan Verwijs on Twitter.

You can also follow Christiaan’s blog at Blog.agilistic.nl.

Jan 15, 2018

Often, as Scrum Masters we see managers behave in ways that are counter the principles of Scrum. In this episode we review such a situation. A manager and the team are in the same room for a workshop that Christiaan is facilitating. The conversation about the importance of safety comes up. What happens next? Listen in to learn what happened and what Christiaan learned from his failure in that meeting.

 

About Christiaan Verwijs

Christiaan is passionate about building awesome products and creating motivating workplaces. He has extensive experience in both software engineering (b.Ec) and organisational psychology (M.Sc). He does this through his company Agilistic, where he helps, train and coach organizations.

You can link with Christiaan Verwijs on LinkedIn and connect with Christiaan Verwijs on Twitter.

You can also follow Christiaan’s blog at Blog.agilistic.nl.

Jan 12, 2018

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 of several aspects to IT management on different levels as well as methodologies used. Originally from Hungary she has worked in many countries. First as a tester, the a project manager, test manager and many other roles.

You can link with Krisztina Sajgo-Kalo on LinkedIn.

Jan 11, 2018

Good facilitation is a major part of a good Retrospective. This week Krisztina introduces the Scrum Games format for the Retrospective, and shares a very special tip that makes Retrospectives the best moments of the Sprint for the team.

 

About Krisztina Sajgo-Kalo

Krisztina is a Senior IT manager with experience of several aspects to IT management on different levels as well as methodologies used. Originally from Hungary she has worked in many countries. First as a tester, the a project manager, test manager and many other roles.

You can link with Krisztina Sajgo-Kalo on LinkedIn.

Jan 10, 2018

Adopting Scrum is a hard journey for most even when the conditions are right. But how about driving change in an organization that is adopting Scrum from scratch, and is historically a top-down command and control organization? Krisztina shares her own story of how that went, and the hard-earned lessons she collected at that time.

 

About Krisztina Sajgo-Kalo

Krisztina is a Senior IT manager with experience of several aspects to IT management on different levels as well as methodologies used. Originally from Hungary she has worked in many countries. First as a tester, the a project manager, test manager and many other roles.

You can link with Krisztina Sajgo-Kalo on LinkedIn.

Jan 9, 2018

Teams complain. I mean, who can blame them? Often they have to deal with corporate policies that would destroy the motivation of even the most excited Agile adopter. As Scrum Masters we know this. But how do we get the teams out of the complaining negative spiral of death? Listen to this episode to learn how Krisztina was able to turn the meetings around, helping the team focusing on improving, rather than complaining. She also shares the concrete tips and tricks she used in her approach.

In this episode we refer to the book Kanban in Action by Joakim Sundén and Marcus Hammarberg. Shameless plug: Marcus Hammerberg is writing a book with Oikosofy on how he used Kanban to save a hospital from bankruptcy, twice! Check it out.

 

About Krisztina Sajgo-Kalo

Krisztina is a Senior IT manager with experience of several aspects to IT management on different levels as well as methodologies used. Originally from Hungary she has worked in many countries. First as a tester, the a project manager, test manager and many other roles.

You can link with Krisztina Sajgo-Kalo on LinkedIn.

Jan 8, 2018

Many Scrum Masters transition from a Project Management position. This transition is not easy. It requires a change in stance (towards facilitation, instead of management) which is not always easy to achieve. In this episode we talk with Krisztina about one of the common anti-patterns that new Scrum Masters face: they lead the conversation. Listen in to learn about how Krisztina detected and later changed that pattern to one that works much better for the team and delivers better results in the end.

 

About Krisztina Sajgo-Kalo

Krisztina is a Senior IT manager with experience of several aspects to IT management on different levels as well as methodologies used. Originally from Hungary she has worked in many countries. First as a tester, the a project manager, test manager and many other roles.

You can link with Krisztina Sajgo-Kalo on LinkedIn.

Jan 5, 2018

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 have worked in 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.

You can link with Viyoma Sachdeva on LinkedIn and connect with Viyoma Sachdeva on Twitter.

Jan 4, 2018

When defining success we often look for metrics that help us assess the progress of the team. That’s ok, but are you looking at the “how”? How is the team achieving that success is also important. So Viyoma asks 4 different questions that help us ensure that not only are we getting the “measurable” success, but we are also helping the team find their “sustainable pace”.

 

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 have worked in 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.

You can link with Viyoma Sachdeva on LinkedIn and connect with Viyoma Sachdeva on Twitter.

Jan 3, 2018

“Developing software for the shelf” is a common term that refers to the anti-pattern of developing software that no one uses. In this episode Vyioma shares with us the story of a team that was doing just that. Creating software that was not used. What did she do? What were the practices to engage stakeholders? How to get the team to care again? Listen to this episode to hear the story and Vyioma’s solution to those questions.

 

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 have worked in 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.

You can link with Viyoma Sachdeva on LinkedIn and connect with Viyoma Sachdeva on Twitter.

Jan 2, 2018

The team was being asked to measure individual velocity and compare that with each other’s velocity. Problems ensued! In this episode we talk about the individual focus, and why that may be catastrophic for the teams. How do we get out of that anti-pattern? That’s the topic of today’s episode, where we share alternative metrics, and other tools that can help the team focus again on collective success.

 

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 have worked in 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.

You can link with Viyoma Sachdeva on LinkedIn and connect with Viyoma Sachdeva on Twitter.

Jan 1, 2018

As new Scrum Masters we are sometimes overwhelmed with all the things that require our attention. It’s ok! You are not alone. When we start looking at the problems the teams are facing it is easy to be driven to act immediately. After all, many of us have been there before. However, there’s an issue with this. First is that we don’t know what the team has already tried. They can tell us their view. So we must first listen. Second, and most important, we don’t know what will actually work. So let’s experiment. In this episode Viyoma shares how she helped a team learn how to experiment and solved a serious blocker with the team’s help.

 

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 have worked in 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.

You can link with Viyoma Sachdeva on LinkedIn and connect with Viyoma Sachdeva on Twitter.

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