TL; DR: Quo Vadis, Scrum Master? — A Live Virtual Meetup on June 4, 2020
Freelancing Scrum Masters being let go, with no new projects on the horizon. Employed Scrum Masters being furloughed or fired. Moreover, considering remote work as the new normal — where does this development leave the Scrum Master or agile coach? Is the “invisible presences” acquiring a new, unwanted meaning?
The first insights are available from the Remote Agile Survey: What are good remote agile practices, and what are possible low-hanging fruits that haven’t yet been tried by a majority of participants? Moreover, we learn if new collaboration practices have been tested and if so what those are.
There has been no shortage of articles on how to work remotely recently, including our series on remote Agile. While most of the ideas, lessons learned, and tips and tricks may not be new to those few remote work pioneers, they are, however, to the rest of us. The question hence is: What remote work problems are agile teams and organizations facing, and what has proven to be successful in the transition? Answering these two questions is the purpose of the Remote Agile Survey: Let us stop guessing but collect data instead to inspect and adapt the way we can work as an agile distributed team.
TL; DR: Scrum Training Classes, Liberating Structures Workshops, and Events
Age-of-Product.com’s parent company — Berlin Product People GmbH — offers Scrum training classes authorized by Scrum.org, Liberating Structures workshops, and hybrid training of Professional Scrum and Liberating Structures. The training classes are offered both in English and German.
Check out the upcoming timetable of training classes, workshops, meetups, and other events below and join your peers.
TL; DR: A Remote Retrospective with a Distributed Team
We started this series on remote agile with looking into practices and tools, followed by exploring virtual Liberating Structures, how to master Zoom as well as common remote agile anti-patterns. This fifth article now dives into organizing a remote Retrospective with a distributed team: practices, tools, and lessons learned.
Scrum Master Interview: Demand Creates Supply and the Job Market for Agile Practitioners is No Exception
Scrum has proven time and again to be the most popular framework for software development. Given that software is eating the world, a seasoned Scrum Master is nowadays in high demand. And that demand causes the market-entry of new professionals from other project management branches, probably believing that reading one or two Scrum books will be sufficient. Which makes any Scrum Master interview a challenging task.
If you are looking to fill a position for a Scrum Master (or agile coach) in your organization, you may find the following 38+9 interview questions useful to identify the right candidate. They are derived from my thirteen years of practical experience with XP as well as Scrum, serving both as product owner and Scrum Master as well as interviewing dozens of Scrum Master candidates on behalf of my clients.
So far, this Scrum Master interview guide has been downloaded more than 16,000 times.
TL; DR: Remote Agile, Part 1: Practices & Tools for Scrum Masters, Agile Coaches, and Product Owners
Agile has always been about colocation, about direct communication, physical boards, and all the other haptic and analog moments to create value in the digital realm. As a Professional Scrum Trainer, I strive to provide training classes without using PowerPoint or digital devices. Moreover, admittedly, I love index cards. However, times are changing. So, let’s dive into the particularities of practicing remote Agile with distributed teams.
We start with basic techniques and tools and follow up with how to apply Liberating Structures in the remote realm. If you like to get a hands-on introduction, consider joining my webinar/live virtual class next Thursday.
If you are working as a Product Owner, there is—very likely—room for improvement. This list of some of the most common Product Owner anti-patterns might be a starting point. Hence, if you recognize some anti-patterns in your daily work, why don’t you ask the rest of the Scrum Team for support? The Product Owner anti-patterns list is a good starting point for a retrospective.
TL; DR: 42+5 Scrum Product Owner Interview Questions That Will Benefit Your Organization
This second publication in the Hands-on Agile Fieldnotes series provides 42+5 questions and answers for the Scrum Product Owner interview.
Co-authored with Andreea Tomoiaga, 42+5 Scrum Product Owner Interview Questions to Avoid Hiring Agile Imposters represents the most important learnings of our more than 20 years combined hands-on experience with Kanban, Scrum, XP, and several product discovery frameworks. We have worked as Scrum Product Owners, Scrum Masters, agile coaches, and developers in agile teams and organizations of all sizes and levels of maturity.
We have each participated in interviewing dozens of Scrum Product Owner candidates on behalf of our clients or employers. The questions and answers herein are what we have learned.
Back in 2017, we started the Scrum Master Salary Report 2017—the first industry report that covered in-depth the educational background, working experience, industries, and organizational details of the companies Scrum Masters or agile coaches work for. For its 2019 edition—the Scrum Master Trends Report 2019—, we partnered with Scrum.org—the leading Scrum training and certification institution founded by Scrum co-founder Ken Schwaber—to improve the underlying data set.
Learn more about the state of the industry and download for free the Scrum Master Trends Report 2019. (Scroll down for the sign-up form.)
TL; DR: 28 Product Backlog and Refinement Anti-Patterns
Scrum is a practical framework to build products, provided you identify in advance what to build. But even after a successful product discovery phase, you may struggle to make the right thing in the right way if your product backlog is not up to the job. Garbage in, garbage out – as the saying goes. The following article points at 28 of the most common product backlog anti-patterns – including the product backlog refinement process – that limit your Scrum team’s success.
TL; DR: The Agile Movers & Shakers Interview w/ Christiaan Verwijs & Barry Overeem
Today we welcome Christiaan Verwijs & Barry Overeem. Christiaan and Barry are both Professional Scrum Trainers (PST) with Scrum.org, dedicated early adopters of Liberating Structures, and co-authors of the upcoming Zombie Scrum Survival Guide.
TL; DR: Agile Training Wheels, Adoption & Maturity—Food for Agile Thought #243
Welcome to the 243rd edition of the Food for Agile Thought newsletter, shared with 26,567 peers. This week, we make the case to get the agile training wheels off; we deal with an example of widespread confusion among experienced agilists, and we approve of a comprehensive list of remote team building activities.
We also delve into the nasty evolution of tricky user interfaces; we come back to envisioning the (product) future, resulting probably in feature factories, and we deal with the need for delegation.
Lastly, we get to the bottom of Zoom fatigue and how we can compensate for the effect.
TL; DR: Creative Adaptability, Applied NoEstimates—Food for Agile Thought #242
Welcome to the 242nd edition of the Food for Agile Thought newsletter, shared with 26,503 peers. This week, we thank Keith and Fisher for insight into how Liberating Structures foster creative adaptability; we apply NoEstimates techniques and philosophy in real life, and we understand critical issues of distributed team building.
We also applaud a new product discovery guide; we learn how OKRs propelled Gmail massive success, and we tackle remote design’s most significant issues.
Lastly, we learn how to remove organizational silos following a new mental model.
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