A Scrum Master Is A Teacher, Mentor, Coach, And Facilitator

A scrum master wears many hats including: teacher, mentor, coach, and facilitator. Part of the art of being an excellent scrum master is being able to flow between these roles fluidly, depending on the situation at hand and the needs of the people involved. Teacher This is the act of showing or explaining something to […]
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Cathy Simpson Becomes A Certified Scrum Trainer

The big news from the Dublin Scrum Gathering is that Cathy Simpson has become a certified scrum trainer. This is a monumental accomplishment. She is one of less than 250 people in the world, and less than 30 women, who hold this certification. We have had the privilege of working with Cathy over the past […]
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Turn The Ship Around – Intent Based Leadership

David Marquet was about to become a submarine commander. He spent a year learning everything about the boat he was going to command. Two weeks before he was to assume command he was given a different sub, and the only thing he knew was that it has the reputation for being the worst in the […]
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Don’t Finish Your Epics! Deliver More Value Instead.

Question Product team is starting to assign business values to epics so we can, along with effort estimates, set correct priorities. However, we also have quarterly goals. Once we reach the end of a quarter, if an epic is not completely done (all stories under it), how do we get partial credit? Answer I recommend […]
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Smaller User Stories Podcast

I recently had a conversation with Dave, over at the Mastering Business Analysis podcast, about splitting big user stories down into smaller stories. The interview was a lot of fun and it’s available now. You can get it direct from the Mastering Business Analysis website, or point your podcatcher at one of these links: iTunes […]
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What Is The Role Of Project Manager In Scrum?

This question came from a client: What is the project manager’s role in scrum? In answer to your question about project managers, there is no project manager role in scrum. The duties of a project manager gets split between the product owner, scrum master and the development team. The product owner has the vision of […]
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Creating Scrum Teams – Choosing Who Is On What Team

Question How should we form scrum teams as our organization adopts scrum? Answer Deciding how to form teams, and which people should be on which teams is the work of management. Of course there are many ways management might choose to do this. One of the most effective ways I’ve found to figure out roles […]
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When Can We Start Sprint 1?

Question How long should we time box the prep time before the first sprint starts – i.e. the time used to decide on a product that has a good chance of meeting the goals, make effort and business value estimates and get the top product backlog items to be sprint ready? Answer I would look […]
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Scrum Retrospectives With Cathy Simpson

Our own Cathy Simpson talks about how to do an agile retrospective with your scrum team in this video. The 5-step retrospective agenda she talks about comes from the book Agile Retrospectives: Making Good Teams Great.
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Estimating Tasks and Management’s Role in Scrum

Here’s an interesting question that just came in from a local scrum master. It’s about estimating tasks and management’s role in choosing the practices that a scrum team uses. Question Chris, The team I am working with wants to do an experiment where they will stop estimating task in hours. Their sprint burn down will […]
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