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Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast: Agile storytelling from the trenches

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: March, 2022
Mar 31, 2022

Psychological Safety (see these episodes for details) is one of the key aspects that Daniel looks for in a team, and also a focus of his work as a Scrum Master. He shares with us some of the signs that indicate the presence, or absence of psychological safety, and recommends we have a retrospective question focused on psychological safety. 

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: A format for quick decision making, and one for new teams

Daniel shares with us why the Agile Retrospectives are the most power tool we have in any transformation or change process we might be involved in. He shares with us 2 different types of retrospective formats. One that is more adequate for teams that are under time pressure and need to get quickly to actions, and improvements, and one for teams that are maybe at a crossroads in their forming process, or are just about to get started. For teams that need to get to quick actions, Daniel recommends the Start, Stop, Continue format or the 1-2-4-all Liberating Structure (see these episodes for more) as these help silent people speak up and get to actions quickly. And for teams that are at a crossroads, or starting their team journey, he recommends the Sailboat Retrospective

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 Daniel Lutz

Daniel is an organizational agile coach, working full time at a leading European Energy company, scaling agile with around 30 agile teams. After years in Marketing departments, he realized how much more impact he can have as a Scrum Master by empowering people and building cross-functional teams. He also works part-time as a freelance coach and business consultant helping clients on building high performing teams.

You can link with Daniel Lutz on LinkedIn and connect with Daniel Lutz on Twitter.

Mar 30, 2022

Read the full Show Notes and search through the world’s largest audio library on Scrum directly on the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast website: http://bit.ly/SMTP_ShowNotes.

When working in an Agile transformation, the organization that Daniel was at tried to scale from 4 pilot teams to 30 agile teams. In this episode, we explore the approaches and steps they took to go from a simple, and contained pilot project, to an organization-wide project. We discuss the difficulties, asd well as the wins during this process.

About Daniel Lutz

Daniel is an organizational agile coach, working full time at a leading European Energy company, scaling agile with around 30 agile teams. After years in Marketing departments, he realized how much more impact he can have as a Scrum Master by empowering people and building cross-functional teams. He also works part-time as a freelance coach and business consultant helping clients on building high performing teams.

You can link with Daniel Lutz on LinkedIn and connect with Daniel Lutz on Twitter.

Mar 29, 2022

Read the full Show Notes and search through the world’s largest audio library on Scrum directly on the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast website: http://bit.ly/SMTP_ShowNotes.

This team started on the right foot. Everything seemed to be working. However, a pattern started to develop. The team was becoming quieter and quieter in their Agile Retrospectives as time went by. The body language was passive, and every team member had the camera off as much as they could. You could feel they were distracted, not present during the retrospectives. In this episode, we discuss how to turn around this anti-pattern of passiveness and lack of commitment to agile retrospectives by the team. 

In this segment, we also talk about the book Moose heads on the table by Karin Tenelius. Karin Tenelius has been a guest on the podcast to talk about her book

Featured Book of the Week: The 5 Dysfunctions of a Team by Lencioni

In The 5 Dysfunctions of a Team by Lencioni (a book we’ve mentioned a few times here on the podcast), Daniel found a great guide to the dynamics that can emerge on a team, and helped him understand how to slowly walk up the pyramid of needs for the team. The book also gives us tools and models that are useful to apply when working with teams. 

How can Angela (the Agile Coach) quickly build healthy relationships with the teams she’s supposed to help? What were the steps she followed to help the Breeze App team fight off the competition? Find out how Angela helped Naomi and the team go from “behind” to being ahead of Intuition Bank, by focusing on the people! Download the first 4 chapters of the BOOK for FREE while it is in Beta!

About Daniel Lutz

Daniel is an organizational agile coach, working full time at a leading European Energy company, scaling agile with around 30 agile teams. After years in Marketing departments, he realized how much more impact he can have as a Scrum Master by empowering people and building cross-functional teams. He also works part-time as a freelance coach and business consultant helping clients on building high performing teams.

You can link with Daniel Lutz on LinkedIn and connect with Daniel Lutz on Twitter.

Mar 28, 2022

Read the full Show Notes and search through the world’s largest audio library on Scrum directly on the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast website: http://bit.ly/SMTP_ShowNotes.

Daniel has a background in Marketing, which gave him a keen understanding of how important it is to reach across departmental boundaries, and work in a cross-functional way. Through that experience, he came to be a fan of Scrum, and learned that there’s no better way to do projects. In his Fail–Monday story, he shares the tale of a company that was adopting Agile, but put together teams with team members that used to be in multiple different departments. It was not a smooth journey. In this episode, we talk about: how important it is to have a Sprint goal, and what it means when teams can’t agree on one; how backlogs can sometimes be more of “todo lists”, which detracts from the value of a cross-functional team; and how sometimes you have to get somebody out of the team for the team to work! Lots of insights on how to set up teams for success during an Agile transformation!

About Daniel Lutz

Daniel is an organizational agile coach, working full time at a leading European Energy company, scaling agile with around 30 agile teams. After years in Marketing departments, he realized how much more impact he can have as a Scrum Master by empowering people and building cross-functional teams. He also works part-time as a freelance coach and business consultant helping clients on building high performing teams.

You can link with Daniel Lutz on LinkedIn and connect with Daniel Lutz on Twitter.

Mar 25, 2022

Read the full Show Notes and search through the world’s largest audio library on Scrum directly on the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast website: http://bit.ly/SMTP_ShowNotes.

The Great Product Owner: The PO that protected the team, and focused on the product, not the process

A new PO came along to this team, and the contrast with the previous PO was huge. The new PO was a product-led person. Did not focus too much on the process, but relied on the team and Scrum Master to help with that. This PO focused on setting the direction and helping the team with decisions, and had a specific superpower that helped the team greatly: he kept the time pressure away from the team.

The Bad Product Owner: The break-up between team and PO

This Product Owner did not see himself as part of the team. This led to some anti-patterns, such as the PO treating the team as a “provider”, and focusing on writing and “sending” requirements to the team. This led to difficulties in communication, such as during refinement sessions and eventually led to a practical break-up between the PO and the team. From this story, Luis took a critical lesson. 

Are you having trouble helping the team work well with their Product Owner? We’ve put together a course to help you work on the collaboration team-product owner. You can find it at bit.ly/coachyourpo. 18 modules, 8+ hours of modules with tools and techniques that you can use to help teams and PO’s collaborate.

About Luis Carvalho

Luis is an enthusiast for all things related with organizations, teams, structures and ways of working. He has been working in large scale consumer products for most of his professional life, worked with people of many backgrounds, cultures and locations and made many friends in the process. He loves traveling, food and getting to know people.

You can link with Luis Carvalho on LinkedIn.

Mar 24, 2022

Read the full Show Notes and search through the world’s largest audio library on Scrum directly on the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast website: http://bit.ly/SMTP_ShowNotes.

“We want to be the best at getting better”, this is the key mission of the Scrum Master, as Luis puts it. As Scrum Masters, we should focus on more than “the deliverable” or “the process”, and build the team to be ready to continuously improve over time. 

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: Mourning the end of a project

As so often happens, many Agile teams go from one project to another without a break. However, when we allow that to happen we skip a critical step in the human process of “letting go” of the previous project, teams, processes, and colleagues. 

In this segment, we talk about the Mourning Retrospective, that helps teams, and team members accept that something ends, and a new story starts. A necessary process for psychological balance.

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 Luis Carvalho

Luis is an enthusiast for all things related with organizations, teams, structures and ways of working. He has been working in large scale consumer products for most of his professional life, worked with people of many backgrounds, cultures and locations and made many friends in the process. He loves traveling, food and getting to know people.

You can link with Luis Carvalho on LinkedIn.

Mar 23, 2022

Read the full Show Notes and search through the world’s largest audio library on Scrum directly on the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast website: http://bit.ly/SMTP_ShowNotes.

Luis and his colleagues were working on a new product that they would introduce in the market. While preparing the team, they decided to start changing some things that would also affect the wider organization. In this episode, we explore how the change we bring to an organization is not necessarily “external”, but can be created by internal triggers and affect plans, teams and ultimately the business!

About Luis Carvalho

Luis is an enthusiast for all things related with organizations, teams, structures and ways of working. He has been working in large scale consumer products for most of his professional life, worked with people of many backgrounds, cultures and locations and made many friends in the process. He loves traveling, food and getting to know people.

You can link with Luis Carvalho on LinkedIn.

Mar 22, 2022

Read the full Show Notes and search through the world’s largest audio library on Scrum directly on the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast website: http://bit.ly/SMTP_ShowNotes.

Luis was working with a consultant team that had been “sold” to the organization as a “superhero team”. However, the setup of that team had some major flaws. To start with the team was not clearly given a mission to deliver, but rather to “evaluate and help” the other teams working on the same product. This triggered an anti-pattern that would later create big problems for this and other teams. Listen in to learn about how “great teams” can sometimes become the source of “great problems”. 

Featured Book of the Week: The Infinite Game by Simon Sinek

In The Infinite Game by Simon Sinek, Luis learned many lessons that are critical also for Scrum Masters. The book discusses the difference between the finite and infinite mindsets. Luis also learned about how important it is important to prepare our teams to outlast our own contribution, and in that way “survive their Scrum Master”. 

How can Angela (the Agile Coach) quickly build healthy relationships with the teams she’s supposed to help? What were the steps she followed to help the Breeze App team fight off the competition? Find out how Angela helped Naomi and the team go from “behind” to being ahead of Intuition Bank, by focusing on the people! Download the first 4 chapters of the BOOK for FREE while it is in Beta!

About Luis Carvalho

Luis is an enthusiast for all things related with organizations, teams, structures and ways of working. He has been working in large scale consumer products for most of his professional life, worked with people of many backgrounds, cultures and locations and made many friends in the process. He loves traveling, food and getting to know people.

You can link with Luis Carvalho on LinkedIn.

Mar 21, 2022

Read the full Show Notes and search through the world’s largest audio library on Scrum directly on the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast website: http://bit.ly/SMTP_ShowNotes.

Luis was working with a new team, in a version 2.0 for an existing product. He started noticing that the sprint goals were not met, and the time pressure was mounting. The inevitable quality issues started to accumulate. Why do so many teams fall prey to these problems? We discuss the root causes that lead teams to start failing their sprints, and discuss how to prepare for these situations.

About Luis Carvalho

Luis is an enthusiast for all things related with organizations, teams, structures and ways of working. He has been working in large scale consumer products for most of his professional life, worked with people of many backgrounds, cultures and locations and made many friends in the process. He loves traveling, food and getting to know people.

You can link with Luis Carvalho on LinkedIn.

Mar 19, 2022

Read the full Show Notes and search through the world’s largest audio library on Scrum directly on the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast website: http://bit.ly/SMTP_ShowNotes.

About Jurgen Appelo and Ari-Pekka Skarp

Jurgen is a serial founder, successful entrepreneur, author, and speaker. He is pioneering management to help creative organizations survive and thrive in the 21st century. He offers concrete games, tools, and practices, so you can introduce better management, with fewer managers.

He’s also been a guest this week here on the podcast. Check out the episodes with Jurgen in the link included in the show notes.

Ari-Pekka Skarp is Organizational Psychologist, Psychotherapist and Agile Coach. He has extensive experience working on large scale organizational transformations as well as with employee wellbeing in occupational healthcare. His special areas of interest are complexity, compassion and social interactions.

Mar 18, 2022

Read the full Show Notes and search through the world’s largest audio library on Scrum directly on the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast website: http://bit.ly/SMTP_ShowNotes.

This week Jurgen is with us to talk about his latest project: unFIX.work.

Jurgen shares his own experience as a product developer (Mindsettlers), and the critical lessons he’s learned as a Product Owner for his own business.
We discuss how hard it is to define the real problem, as seen by our customers, and the market at large. 

In this episode, we refer to Kathy Sierra and her idea of “make your users awesome”, we refer to the Jobs To Be Done Framework, and the work by Clayton Christensen, and discuss the ideas in the book Team Topologies which has been featured here on the podcast

Are you having trouble helping the team work well with their Product Owner? We’ve put together a course to help you work on the collaboration team-product owner. You can find it at bit.ly/coachyourpo. 18 modules, 8+ hours of modules with tools and techniques that you can use to help teams and PO’s collaborate.

About Jurgen Appelo

Jurgen Appelo is an entrepreneur, an author, and keynote speaker who applies Agile to his life and his businesses. He’s also prolific writer on all topics business and agile. He wrote Management 3.0, How to Change the World, Managing for Happiness and his latest book about entrepreneurship and product development: Startup, Scale up, Screw up.

You can link with Jurgen Appelo on LinkedIn and connect with Jurgen Appelo on Twitter.

Mar 17, 2022

Read the full Show Notes and search through the world’s largest audio library on Scrum directly on the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast website: http://bit.ly/SMTP_ShowNotes.

This week Jurgen is with us to talk about his latest project: unFIX.work. In this episode, we discuss organization design, an aspect that scaling frameworks enforce without explaining or preparing the organizations that adopt them for what that means. Jurgen shares the end-to-end model of organization design, and what he thinks will be the winning model of organizational design in the future. 

In this episode, we refer to Anton Zotin’s episodes a guest that talks about how teams are formed based on company goals, the book Organization Design: Simplifying complex systems by Nicolay Worren, the book Networked, Scaled, and Agile: A Design Strategy for Complex Organizations by Amy Kates et al., the front-to-back model, and the concept of dual operating system

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 Jurgen Appelo

Jurgen Appelo is an entrepreneur, an author, and keynote speaker who applies Agile to his life and his businesses. He’s also prolific writer on all topics business and agile. He wrote Management 3.0, How to Change the World, Managing for Happiness and his latest book about entrepreneurship and product development: Startup, Scale up, Screw up.

You can link with Jurgen Appelo on LinkedIn and connect with Jurgen Appelo on Twitter.

Mar 16, 2022

Read the full Show Notes and search through the world’s largest audio library on Scrum directly on the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast website: http://bit.ly/SMTP_ShowNotes.

This week Jurgen is with us to talk about his latest project: unFIX.work. Jurgen starts this episode by sharing a little known fact about his name, and his personality. We then discuss the role of “change” in Agile adoption. We discuss different types of change (Kaizen, Kaikaku) and why scaling frameworks should take into account both types. 

In this episode, we talk about Fitness Landscape, Holacracy, Systems Thinking and refer to the book The Systems Bible: The Beginner's Guide to Systems Large and Small by John Gall.

About Jurgen Appelo

Jurgen Appelo is an entrepreneur, an author, and keynote speaker who applies Agile to his life and his businesses. He’s also prolific writer on all topics business and agile. He wrote Management 3.0, How to Change the World, Managing for Happiness and his latest book about entrepreneurship and product development: Startup, Scale up, Screw up.

You can link with Jurgen Appelo on LinkedIn and connect with Jurgen Appelo on Twitter.

Mar 15, 2022

Read the full Show Notes and search through the world’s largest audio library on Scrum directly on the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast website: http://bit.ly/SMTP_ShowNotes.

This week Jurgen is with us to talk about his latest project: unFIX.work.In this episode we talk about productivity in teams and organizations. Jurgen shares with us how he sees the current productivity paradigm, and what the productivity paradigms are missing: community. We explore why community, not only productivity, should be the focus of Agile and the frameworks around Agile adoption. 

In this episode we refer to The Toyota Way by Jeffrey Liker, Chris Smith from Redgate Software, the book Shift from Product to People by Pete Oliver-Krueger, and Michael Dougherty, LeSS and SAFe, which have both been covered here on the podcast with their respective creators: Bas Vodde and Dean Leffingwell

How can Angela (the Agile Coach) quickly build healthy relationships with the teams she’s supposed to help? What were the steps she followed to help the Breeze App team fight off the competition? Find out how Angela helped Naomi and the team go from “behind” to being ahead of Intuition Bank, by focusing on the people! Download the first 4 chapters of the BOOK for FREE while it is in Beta!

About Jurgen Appelo

Jurgen Appelo is an entrepreneur, an author, and keynote speaker who applies Agile to his life and his businesses. He’s also prolific writer on all topics business and agile. He wrote Management 3.0, How to Change the World, Managing for Happiness and his latest book about entrepreneurship and product development: Startup, Scale up, Screw up.

You can link with Jurgen Appelo on LinkedIn and connect with Jurgen Appelo on Twitter.

Mar 14, 2022

Read the full Show Notes and search through the world’s largest audio library on Scrum directly on the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast website: http://bit.ly/SMTP_ShowNotes.

This week Jurgen is with us to talk about his latest project: unFIX.work. Organization design for continuous innovation and better human experience

Jurgen calls the unFIX model “lego for organization design”, and refers to it as an evolution over the several scaling frameworks that have been popularized in the Agile community. 

In this episode, we refer to Dynamic Re-teaming by Heidi Helfand.

The unFix model does not focus only on organization though, and we discuss the aspects of employee experience that drove Jurget to work on, and define the unFIX model. 

In this episode, we also refer to “Slow Motion Multitasking”, a concept popularized by Tim Hardford in this talk.

About Jurgen Appelo

Jurgen Appelo is an entrepreneur, an author, and keynote speaker who applies Agile to his life and his businesses. He’s also prolific writer on all topics business and agile. He wrote Management 3.0, How to Change the World, Managing for Happiness and his latest book about entrepreneurship and product development: Startup, Scale up, Screw up.

You can link with Jurgen Appelo on LinkedIn and connect with Jurgen Appelo on Twitter.

Mar 11, 2022

Read the full Show Notes and search through the world’s largest audio library on Scrum directly on the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast website: http://bit.ly/SMTP_ShowNotes.

The Great Product Owner: The PO that knew how to nurture an Agile culture in the team

This Product Owner had a clear willingness to learn, and to accept a new role that was new to them. Through that, the PO was able to help build an agile culture, a culture of “being agile” instead of “doing agile”. In this episode, we hear how a team is an ecosystem and has its own culture that needs to be nurtured by the Scrum Master, and the Product Owner.

The Bad Product Owner: When the PO’s lose focus on value, a PO anti-pattern

This PO was not able to focus on the value the team was helping to create. When this anti-pattern happens, then the team ends up being focused on “just doing the work”, and is not able to bring their technology perspective into the creation of a clear value, or impact on the user. 

Are you having trouble helping the team work well with their Product Owner? We’ve put together a course to help you work on the collaboration team-product owner. You can find it at bit.ly/coachyourpo. 18 modules, 8+ hours of modules with tools and techniques that you can use to help teams and PO’s collaborate.

About Nick Nielsen

Nick completed his education at Aarhus University in Denmark and currently works in the Digital Organisation at Grundfos, the worlds biggest pump manufacturer. He views him self as a pragmatic Agile Handyman.

You can link with Nick Nielsen on LinkedIn and connect with Nick Nielsen on Twitter.

Mar 10, 2022

Read the full Show Notes and search through the world’s largest audio library on Scrum directly on the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast website: http://bit.ly/SMTP_ShowNotes.

Scrum Masters work on many levels of the organization, and sometimes that makes success hard to spot. Nick shares how he starated using metrics for many different aspects of his work, and how he was able to create a perspective on his own success through constant measurements with a holistic view. 

In this episode, we talk about the DORA metrics

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: The Tournament of Ideas Agile Retrospective

The Sailboat Retrospective is one of Nick’s favourite formats. He explains that the technique can be easily adopted to many different contexts, and helps people think through their context in a visual manner. In this episode, we also talk about the “tournament retrospective”, where improvement ideas are pitched against each other to find the one idea the team wants to focus on.

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 Nick Nielsen

Nick completed his education at Aarhus University in Denmark and currently works in the Digital Organisation at Grundfos, the worlds biggest pump manufacturer. He views him self as a pragmatic Agile Handyman.

You can link with Nick Nielsen on LinkedIn and connect with Nick Nielsen on Twitter.

Mar 9, 2022

Read the full Show Notes and search through the world’s largest audio library on Scrum directly on the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast website: http://bit.ly/SMTP_ShowNotes.

In this episode, we hear about a company that was going through a long, 3.5 year journey of Agile transformation. When Nick joined, they had just decided to adopt SAFe, as a way to scale their use of Agile methods. Unfortunately, this is not a story of complete success, as we hear about how a traditional consultancy tried to impose SAFe on the organization, with a top-down, linear (aka Waterfall) plan of adoption. Fortunately, however, the Agile Coaches and Scrum Masters in that organization were able to turn the adoption around, and make it succeed! Listen in to learn about how NOT TO adopt Agile/SAFe.

In this episode, we refer to the 1-2-4-all technique from Liberating Structures, and the Lean Change Management approach to change and transformation.

About Nick Nielsen

Nick completed his education at Aarhus University in Denmark and currently works in the Digital Organisation at Grundfos, the worlds biggest pump manufacturer. He views him self as a pragmatic Agile Handyman.

You can link with Nick Nielsen on LinkedIn and connect with Nick Nielsen on Twitter.

Mar 8, 2022

Read the full Show Notes and search through the world’s largest audio library on Scrum directly on the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast website: http://bit.ly/SMTP_ShowNotes.

In this story, we hear about one person that joined an Agile team, but was not ready to adopt the Agile mindset and values. What happened next was a warning for all of us that face similar situations. We discuss what happens when people join a team with very different mindsets and values than their own, and how Scrum Masters can prepare for that situation.

Featured Book of the Week: Accelerate by Gene Kim et al. 

In Accelerate by Gene Kim et al., Nick found out about the DORA metrics, and how metrics can be a key source of insights for Agile adoption, and continuous improvement. Nick describes how the book helped him create his own dashboard for Agile adoption the organizations where he works.

How can Angela (the Agile Coach) quickly build healthy relationships with the teams she’s supposed to help? What were the steps she followed to help the Breeze App team fight off the competition? Find out how Angela helped Naomi and the team go from “behind” to being ahead of Intuition Bank, by focusing on the people! Download the first 4 chapters of the BOOK for FREE while it is in Beta!

About Nick Nielsen

Nick completed his education at Aarhus University in Denmark and currently works in the Digital Organisation at Grundfos, the worlds biggest pump manufacturer. He views him self as a pragmatic Agile Handyman.

You can link with Nick Nielsen on LinkedIn and connect with Nick Nielsen on Twitter.

Mar 8, 2022

This is the third, and last episode of the The Scrum Master Journey (SMJ), a program designed to help you succeed as Scrum Master. Marc joins us to explain what that SMJ program includes, and share some first-hand stories of how this program has already helped many Scrum Masters in practice. 

If you want to know more, you can visit the Scrum Master Journey at https://scrum-master-toolbox.org/SMJ

For the full show notes on this episode, please visit the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast website: http://bit.ly/SMTP_ShowNotes.

About Marc Löffler

Marc’s a super active member of the Agile community. In his spare time from consulting, speaking and training he’s found the time to start a blog, a podcast and write two books! 

Marc is also the host of the Scrum Master journey

You can link with Marc Löffler on LinkedIn and connect with Marc Löffler on Twitter. 

Mar 7, 2022

Read the full Show Notes and search through the world’s largest audio library on Scrum directly on the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast website: http://bit.ly/SMTP_ShowNotes.

Agile is about learning and becoming resilient. This is true both for teams as well as for Scrum Masters. In this episode we talk about how someimtes we fail to help teams become “teams”. This tsory starts with a team that had changed its composition, abnd some external consultants were brought in. 

In this episode, we talk about Heidi Helfand’s work on Dynamic Re-teaming, and the Tuckman’s stages of group formation.

About Nick Nielsen

Nick completed his education at Aarhus University in Denmark and currently works in the Digital Organisation at Grundfos, the worlds biggest pump manufacturer. He views him self as a pragmatic Agile Handyman.

You can link with Nick Nielsen on LinkedIn and connect with Nick Nielsen on Twitter.

Mar 4, 2022

The Great Product Owner: The team player PO

Great Product Owners engage with the team, and take part in helping form the team. They take responsibility over helping teams succeed. They share their Vision with the team, and welcome feedback and questions. They are prepared for meetings and both respect and are respected by the team. 

The Bad Product Owner: The company culture that destroyed a Product Owner’s chance for success

When the team feels cut-off from the Product Owner decisions, and work, they can either help or understand the PO’s decisions. If on top of this the PO skips ceremonies, we have the conditions for a conflict, and lack of collaboration. In this segment, we also talk about the type of company culture that drives Product Owners to disregard the team collaboration aspects of their work.

Are you having trouble helping the team work well with their Product Owner? We’ve put together a course to help you work on the collaboration team-product owner. You can find it at bit.ly/coachyourpo. 18 modules, 8+ hours of modules with tools and techniques that you can use to help teams and PO’s collaborate.

About Lorna Mason & Jon Lawrence

Lorna Mason and Jon Lawrence are both agilists working in an insurance scale-up based in Brighton. Their journey to agile has walked a less 'traditional' path of Change Management and Continuous Improvement, to Scrum Master, Delivery Manager and Agile Coach; (proving not EVERY Scrum Master needs to code!). They hold the firm belief that you can be a successful Scrum Master as long as you genuinely care about people and value first; and hold a profound desire to always make things better!

You can link with Lorna Mason on LinkedIn

You can link with Jon Lawrence on LinkedIn.

Mar 3, 2022

When a team is performing, and they show up and are happy in their work, these are great signs that the Scrum Master has helped the team. All of these are signs that we can be sure to move on, and the team will likely pick-up and own their own process. We also about about how Scrum Masters can help to create an environment where teams can succeed.

In this segment, we talk about “bad jokes” and “dad jokes” as a great way to break the ice in teams or retrospectives. 

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: The Sailboat as a great new-team retrospective

When we start with a new team, it’s good to have a format that helps us understand the team, and their context. Jona and Lorna suggest we could start with the Sailboat Retrospective and use that to establish a baseline for the team. Then we talk about a retrospective format to use at the end of a cycle with the team, the Awards Ceremony retrospective. This format helps us get closure while learning from what happened during that period.

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 Lorna Mason & Jon Lawrence

Lorna Mason and Jon Lawrence are both agilists working in an insurance scale-up based in Brighton. Their journey to agile has walked a less 'traditional' path of Change Management and Continuous Improvement, to Scrum Master, Delivery Manager and Agile Coach; (proving not EVERY Scrum Master needs to code!). They hold the firm belief that you can be a successful Scrum Master as long as you genuinely care about people and value first; and hold a profound desire to always make things better!

You can link with Lorna Mason on LinkedIn

You can link with Jon Lawrence on LinkedIn.

Mar 2, 2022

We share 2 stories of change in this episode. One about scaling Agile to a large organization, and the other about keeping Agile on track despite fast growth in another organization. In the first story we discuss the value (or lack thereof) of some scaling ceremonies, and talk about how we can tailor any framework to the reality of the organization and teams we work with. In the second story, we explore how building relationships between the key stakeholders and the teams helped to understand what was needed to keep the organization on the Agile path, despite the fast growth.

About Lorna Mason & Jon Lawrence

Lorna Mason and Jon Lawrence are both agilists working in an insurance scale-up based in Brighton. Their journey to agile has walked a less 'traditional' path of Change Management and Continuous Improvement, to Scrum Master, Delivery Manager and Agile Coach; (proving not EVERY Scrum Master needs to code!). They hold the firm belief that you can be a successful Scrum Master as long as you genuinely care about people and value first; and hold a profound desire to always make things better!

You can link with Lorna Mason on LinkedIn

You can link with Jon Lawrence on LinkedIn.

Mar 1, 2022

This team had a strong “legacy debt”, lots of old code they needed to maintain and develop further. Having worked in a waterfall before did not help this team, as they looked at testing as “a separate task”. How to help this team adjust, and learn to be Agile? We discuss the many anti-patterns this team had to overcome, and how the idea of “unlearning” the old ways of working helped this team evolve.

Featured Book of the Week: Dynamic Re-teaming by Heidi Helfand, and Start with Why by Simon Sinek

In this tag-team episode, we hear about two books that Lorna and Jon find critical for any Scrum Master. First we learn about Start with Why by Simon Sinek, and we discuss his Ted Talk on the topic. Then we learn about the book Dynamic Re-teaming by Heidi Helfand, who’s been a guest here on the podcast. 

How can Angela (the Agile Coach) quickly build healthy relationships with the teams she’s supposed to help? What were the steps she followed to help the Breeze App team fight off the competition? Find out how Angela helped Naomi and the team go from “behind” to being ahead of Intuition Bank, by focusing on the people! Download the first 4 chapters of the BOOK for FREE while it is in Beta!

About Lorna Mason & Jon Lawrence

Lorna Mason and Jon Lawrence are both agilists working in an insurance scale-up based in Brighton. Their journey to agile has walked a less 'traditional' path of Change Management and Continuous Improvement, to Scrum Master, Delivery Manager and Agile Coach; (proving not EVERY Scrum Master needs to code!). They hold the firm belief that you can be a successful Scrum Master as long as you genuinely care about people and value first; and hold a profound desire to always make things better!

You can link with Lorna Mason on LinkedIn

You can link with Jon Lawrence on LinkedIn.

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