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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: Page 55
Mar 11, 2015

Recruiting interviews are the bread and butter of the recruiting process for many organizations. However, if you have a candidate that aces the recruiting interview, does that that mean that he or she would be a good hire? Knowing how to answer interview questions is not the same as knowing how to solve real-life problems. Nicolas shares his ideas on how to change the interview process to focus on what matters.

About Nicolas Umiatowski

Nicholas is 40 year old. He is a a French agile coach, specialized in Scrum and Kanban with a strong experiences in Digital and web projects.

He likes Design thinking, storyboarding (especially paper prototypes), getting real feedback from real users, and helping the team to reach symbiosis, and to find meaning in what they do. He is absolutely passionate about agility, but aware that depending on the context (as a consultant), agility can be different from one company to another.

 

You can find Nicolas Umiatowski on twitter, and follow his blog in french: Nicolas Umiatowski in French.

Mar 10, 2015

The fear of losing your job can drive a blame culture and a lot of other dysfunctional behaviors in teams. When that fear sets in, defensiveness, silos, lack of cooperation are just some of the symptoms you should expect to see.

Nicolas also mentions how important it is for teams to learn how to deal with failure without falling prey to the blame culture.

About Nicolas Umiatowski

Nicholas is 40 year old. He is a a French agile coach, specialized in Scrum and Kanban with a strong experiences in Digital and web projects.

He likes Design thinking, storyboarding (especially paper prototypes), getting real feedback from real users, and helping the team to reach symbiosis, and to find meaning in what they do. He is absolutely passionate about agility, but aware that depending on the context (as a consultant), agility can be different from one company to another.

 

You can find Nicolas Umiatowski on twitter, and follow his blog in french: Nicolas Umiatowski in French.

Mar 9, 2015

"Help organizations improve," is what Nicolas decided to do after having started his career in IT as a self-taught programmer, and later as a project manager. From looking for bottlenecks to helping organizations adopt Continuous delivery, these are just some of the lessons Nicolas learned from his experience and applies today in his work as an agile coach.

Nicolas also refers to the podcast This Agile Life, which we believe is a great addition to your podcast library if you like the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast.

About Nicolas Umiatowski

Nicholas is 40 year old. He is a a French agile coach, specialized in Scrum and Kanban with a strong experiences in Digital and web projects.

He likes Design thinking, storyboarding (especially paper prototypes), getting real feedback from real users, and helping the team to reach symbiosis, and to find meaning in what they do. He is absolutely passionate about agility, but aware that depending on the context (as a consultant), agility can be different from one company to another.

 

You can find Nicolas Umiatowski on twitter, and follow his blog in french: Nicolas Umiatowski in French.

Mar 6, 2015

Why not share the results of the retrospectives with the rest of the organization? That’s one very effective way to make the current team’s obstacles visible to the rest of the organization.

Start with something simple, like the Check-in from the Core protocols, and share what you find with the organization. Help the organization help the team using the retrospective output.

About Andy Deighton

Andy has over 20 years of development experience in Smalltalk and Java, and is now a Scrum Master at Bright Interactive, based in Brighton on the south coast of the UK. He's a former professional photographer and budding songwriter.

You can find Andy Deighton on twitter. Connect with Andy Deighton in LinkedIn.

Mar 5, 2015

Agile outside software work is one of the topics that Andy discusses in the context of defining the success of the Scrum Master. As Scrum Masters we work with everybody in the organization, not just the team. Helping others is an effective way to help the teams as well!

Andy also shares his views on how we should NOT measure success of a Scrum Master.

About Andy Deighton

Andy has over 20 years of development experience in Smalltalk and Java, and is now a Scrum Master at Bright Interactive, based in Brighton on the south coast of the UK. He's a former professional photographer and budding songwriter.

You can find Andy Deighton on twitter. Connect with Andy Deighton in LinkedIn.

Mar 4, 2015

Andy discusses how hard it is to hire, and how we must constantly help Scrum Masters grow in their practice. Even if the Scrum Master is doing a good job (and also because of it), the teams will evolve. The style of the Scrum Master must then match that team evolution.

About Andy Deighton

Andy has over 20 years of development experience in Smalltalk and Java, and is now a Scrum Master at Bright Interactive, based in Brighton on the south coast of the UK. He's a former professional photographer and budding songwriter.

You can find Andy Deighton on twitter. Connect with Andy Deighton in LinkedIn.

Mar 3, 2015

Communication inside the team is a key indicator of whether they are performing or not. But the quality of communication in the team will also directly affect the communication with the stakeholders. Andy shares his insights into how to enable teams to improve the way they communicate, and work on the group dynamic.

About Andy Deighton

Andy has over 20 years of development experience in Smalltalk and Java, and is now a Scrum Master at Bright Interactive, based in Brighton on the south coast of the UK. He's a former professional photographer and budding songwriter.

You can find Andy Deighton on twitter. Connect with Andy Deighton in LinkedIn.

Mar 2, 2015

Andy starts by defining a great team: happy people building great software. A team that is focused on outcomes, rather than outputs. He explains how he learned to be a better Scrum Master through his experience, and what he changed in his own approach to the role of scrum master. 

About Andy Deighton

Andy has over 20 years of development experience in Smalltalk and Java, and is now a Scrum Master at Bright Interactive, based in Brighton on the south coast of the UK. He's a former professional photographer and budding songwriter.

You can find Andy Deighton on twitter. Connect with Andy Deighton in LinkedIn.

Feb 27, 2015

How do we help organizations to recognize the value that scrum teams can bring, and the obstacles they face in the process? Stephen Thomas shares his recipe and describes a few ideas of how the retrospectives can be an effective practice to help organizations evolve and get better. 

Stephen’s recipe for organization improvement:

  • Help the teams understand their progress with a physical (as opposed to digital) and visual burndown (colorful if possible).
  • Write the principles on the wall and make sure people see them regularly. Point to them when needed.
  • Have lots of wall space for teams to use and create their shared view of their work.
  • Help start and facilitate organization-level retrospectives, because improving one team is not enough for lasting change. 
  • Make the team independent 

 

Before implementing all of this, make sure that the organization has the necessary knowledge to work in an agile manner, helping organize training if needed, and working with stakeholders regularly.

About Stephen Thomas

Stephen has been managing digital projects since 2004. Initially specialising in e-learning, he now looks after multiple projects that range from rapidly produced native apps to large-scale social networks. Based in Oxford, he is also one of the founders of the DOPM meetup.

 

 

You can connect with Stephen Thomas in LinkedIn, and follow Stephen Thomas on Twitter.

Feb 26, 2015

Defining success for scrum masters is not easy, but it is necessary for us to achieve it. Does it have to do with reaching the sprint goal? Or a regular daily goal? Can a scrum master be successful when the team does not release software regularly? And how about the customer’s view? How can the customer help us define and assess success as Scrum Masters? 

 

Stephen shares how he struggled to define success for him as Scrum Master, and why that was hard. 

Feb 25, 2015

 

What should we do to help choose the best people for our teams and organizations? Especially if we already believe the recruiting interview is not the best possible, or even most effective method to bring out the best in people. Stephen has a few ideas on how to prepare for the recruiting process, and how to setup a way to watch the candidates in action before finalizing the recruitment process.

Feb 24, 2015

What can you do, as a Scrum Master when the team is stuck in a pattern of negativity and self-destruction? Stephen explains the situation of a team that was in that situation, and what were the symptoms that characterized the problems the teams were facing. He discusses how communication suffers, how the us versus them dynamic emerged and how hard it was to help the team in that situation. We also discuss the techniques you can use to help the team get out of that pattern of self-destruction.

Feb 23, 2015

 

How can we help teams learn as Scrum Masters? What fails when they don’t? And what is the role of ceremonies like the retrospectives in Scrum? These and other questions are tackled in this episode. Stephen also discusses how the search for control can actually have a negative impact on the success of the team.

Feb 20, 2015

Organizations need to be supported every day in their agile journey. Mario Lucero shares his insights about that process. He mentions that inequality of teams and managers can threaten your agile adoption process and suggests a way to help organizations effectively adopt Agile.

Feb 19, 2015

Scrum masters help teams when they create an environment where teams can, and are willing to take ownership and responsibility for what they deliver. Teams that take ownership are then ready to start solving their problems.

Feb 18, 2015

Recruiting is not easy, but when you are recruiting for an offshore team you face even more problems. How to select the right candidate? The role of language in the relationship with the client, and how to handle multiple cultures are also topics in this episode.

Teams face cultural barriers, and remote stakeholders. In this offshore context recruiting is not easy.

Feb 17, 2015

Team dynamics are affected by many factors, including certain individual behaviors. Teams that exhibit some of the symptoms referred by Mario may be in trouble. We need to learn about those symptoms and have strategies to deal with those.

Feb 16, 2015

This story starts with an US based company acquiring a Latin American software development organization. Mario shares what happened after that, and what he learned from the experience, where distributed agile development was the main method of development.

Books mentioned in this interview

Mario also talks about videos that are worth watching, here are some:

 

Feb 13, 2015

How do we define and involve the right stakeholders? What are the tools we can use to find and involve them? How do help stakeholders find alignment and help the team?

Matt also shares a checklist he uses to evaluate his work as a scrum master.

Feb 12, 2015

Matt tells us how he defines success for the Scrum Master role. The key characteristics and how to link it all up to business value. He also mentions the technique he uses as a “barometer” of his success as a Scrum Master.

Feb 11, 2015

How can you find if a person you are recruiting is a “team player”. Matt explains his experience in one situation where he missed that aspect, and what he learned from that. He gives a recipe of how you can screen for team fit when recruiting Scrum Masters.

Feb 10, 2015

 

Matt explains how the focus on the negative can emerge from the harmless need for “venting” your frustration. Too much venting can have disastrous consequences on the team’s morale and motivation. He also offers an antidote for that negativity in this episode.

Feb 9, 2015

Matt tells us about a failed agile transition, and what he learned from that experience. He also talks about one of the biggest threats to agile transitions all over the world: the “shiny object syndrome” that affects many organizations today.


Matt also recommends a book: Scrum and XP from the trenches by Henrik Kniberg: http://www.amazon.com/Scrum-Trenches-Enterprise-Software-Development/dp/1430322640

Feb 6, 2015

If you thought that Jeff Kosciejew learned about being a great Scrum Master from his software industry experience you’d be wrong. Jeff learned a lot about being a servant leader, and a champion for a high-performance culture in his days as a Bank Manager. He shares his story of how his Scrum-like principles and values helped him create a superior Bank experience for his customers. He details how he was able to build a self-organizing team in his Bank branch and how he learned to be a servant leader. It’s all about people, people! :)

Feb 5, 2015

Jeff Kosciejew discusses the three key questions for defining success and shares how his experience as a musician informed the definition of success as a Scrum Master. A very inspiring story of how Scrum Masters can fundamentally affect their team’s performance and each of the team member’s well-being.

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