The Importance of a Scrum Master

The Importance of a Scrum MasterThe Importance of a Scrum Master

  • Scrum

  • Who is a Scrum Master?

  • Objectives of a Scrum Master

  • Roles of a Scrum Master

  • Services of a Scrum Master

 

Scrum

Scrum is an implementation method of bringing about Agile in an organization.

Let’s say we have a big project consisting of lengthy processes. It’d be easier to work if we could break them down into smaller tasks. So, first of all, we plan just enough to get started with building the minimal feature set. We build what was planned. And then, we test and review that small feature set and get it ready to deliver. When this cycle is complete, we are ready with a potentially shippable product.

 

Who is a Scrum Master?

The Scrum Master is the person responsible for ensuring that the scrum is understood and enacted by the scrum team. A scrum team includes the Development Team, the Product Owner and theScrum Master.

Scrum masters ensure that the scrum team adheres to the Scrum principles and practices. They help those who do not belong to the scrum team to understand which of their interactions with the scrum team are helpful and which aren't. They help everyone modify their method and style of interactions to maximize the value built by the scrum team.

 

Objectives of a Scrum Master

The key objective of a Scrum Master is to ensure that the team implements Agile principles and values. He/she administers if the team follows the practices and processes that they agreed to use. Besides, there are several skills and qualities which are expected in a Scrum Master to be able to satisfy the needs of the client and taste success in business.

 

Roles of a Scrum Master

A Scrum Master assumes several roles and responsibilities while implementing scrum in an organization. They are as follows:

  • Servant Leader - A Scrum Master’s focus is on understanding, acknowledging and serving the needs of the development team members and those whom they ultimately serve (the customers). His or her intent should be able to achieve favourable results that are in line with the principles, values, and objectives of the organization.
  • Facilitator - He or she facilitates by setting up the stage and drawing precise boundaries in which the team can collaborate.
  • Coach - He or she coaches individuals to focus on modifying their behaviour and mindset, to achieve sustained improvement.
  • Conflict navigator  - He or she addresses dysfunctional behaviours and indifferent attitudes prevailing amongst individuals in the development team.
  • Manager - He or she assumes the responsibility of managing impediments and processes, eliminating waste, managing the organization’s culture, ensuring the healthiness of the team, and managing the boundaries of self-organization. The Scrum Master also manages the necessary infrastructure required for daily meetings in which concerns and deadlines are discussed.
  • Mentor - He or she transfers agile knowledge, expertise and his or her own experience to the development team and acts as a mentor to the whole scrum team and the organization.
  • Teacher - He or she ensures that Scrum is understood well and enacted properly.
  • Administrator - Besides leading and managing the scrum team, a Scrum Master performs administrative functions in order to be sure that the team has the properequipment in place and the right environment to accomplish their tasks.

Services of a Scrum Master

The Scrum Master serves an organization in several ways.

Services to the product owner

  • The scrum master serves the product owner in various ways including:
  • Finding numerous techniques to ensure effective product backlog management.
  • Helping the scrum team understand why clear and concise product backlog items are highly essential.
  • Understanding product planning in a dynamic and empirical environment.
  • Ensuring that the product owner is aware of the methods in which the product backlog should be arranged to maximize value.
  • Understanding and practising agility and facilitating scrum events as and when needed or requested.

 

Services to the development team

  • The scrum master serves the development team in many ways including:
  • Training self-organization and cross-functionality to the development team. 
  • Helping the development team in building high-value products.
  • Removing impediments, if any, and promote the development team's progress.
  • Facilitating Scrum events as and when needed or requested.
  • Coaching the development team on how to act in an organizational environment where scrum is neither fully adopted nor completely understood.

 

Services to the organization

  • The scrum master serves the organization in numerous ways including:
  • Leading and coaching the organization in the process of adoption of the scrum.
  • Planning and implementation of scrum within the organization.
  • Helping the employees and stakeholders of the organization in understanding and annexing scrum in empirical product development.
  • Bringing about changes in the functioning of the organization that increases the productivity of the scrum team.
  • Working with the other scrum masters to ensure an increase in the effectiveness and efficiency of the application of scrum in the organization.

 

In conclusion, if an organization is okay with yielding mediocre results, then they may take a chance in deciding whether or not to employ a Scrum Master. But, if an organization is concerned about protecting its goodwill and attaining customer satisfaction, a Scrum Master should be suitably employed because he or she would be the apt person to strike a balance between the organization’s objectives and the interests of the development team.