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  • Peter Zylka-Greger

Why the Scrum Mastery Pathway would have been the Scrum training I needed when I started (Part 2)

If you haven't read part 1, I've got you covered - click here

In part 1, I shared how challenging it was to start in this entirely new role called "Scrum Master", but eventually things worked out. I got more settled in the role, learned more about the framework and more importantly, understood better how a Scrum Master can support the team.

But as Nelly Furtado taught us in 2006: "Why do all good things come to an end?"

This was also the case for me and the project I was in. It ended and I had to look for a new gig. I was lucky and fortunate to find a new one fast and got myself into a new environment: a start-up

2 thingS I wished I knew back then

Number 1: Not everyone will like what you do

This one was quite a challenging one for me. Considering the assumptions I had about start-ups and that everyone in a start-up is surely "agile", which to some extent was quite true, I've met amazing people and learned so much from them.

But as a pretty new Scrum Master, I was not prepared for all of this:

Do we really need to do a Sprint Review every 2 weeks?
Why do we need the Refinement?
Can we not just work as we used to do?
All this doesn't make sense!
I do not think, this Scrum process fits our needs.

If you just thought, some of these questions sounded familiar, I'm sure you are not alone.

I on the other hand back then thought I was alone: Wasn't my job as a Scrum Master to convince everyone in the team how amazing working in Scrum is? If they do not like it, I'm sure the one to be blamed, right?

So I tried really hard to convince everyone of how amazing all this could be, without really having anything any foundation for my approach. I simply went from discussion to discussion to discussion...

Eventually and with a bit of time, we got into a mode where it worked out, but looking back, I could have handled things a lot better.

Behind all of this though there was a deeper problem:

Number 2: You do not need the answer for everything!

"Wait? What?" would have probably been my reaction if someone told me that during that time. Back then, I thought there was a reason I was hired as a Scrum Master. And the reason was an inner dialogue I kept for quite a long time: "I'm here to fix things. So I need to know things and I need to prove quickly that I do know these things so that I can have answers for everything someone asks me."

There was this urge to demonstrate to everyone who put their trust in me, that they have made the right decision - and the only way I knew back then, was to go into the "doing" and "knowing" parts. And due to that, I stopped doing an essential thing all along: LISTENING!

With what I know now, I'd be super curious to find out what people were saying to me and how different of a picture I would have gotten, if I was already able to truly listen. (Invite: If anyone knows how to time travel, let me know. But only if it is unlimited time travel I would think about going back, because if I only get 1-time travel, I still choose to see dinosaurs)

How would the Scrum Mastery pathway have helped me?

2 modules that we go through in the Scrum Mastery Pathway come to my mind.

The first one is the "Tactful" model - Saying What Needs To Be Said:

In this module, we will talk about the "bystander effect", and "people-pleasing", but also get to experience and practice a powerful tool to communicate what needs to be said in a tactful manner, which will perfectly build on the modules "Respected" and "Enabling".

The second module is one of my favorites: "Enabling", because:

A good ScrumMaster encourages people to talk to each other; A great ScrumMaster encourages people to listen to each other

In this module, we'll not only practice with a truly amazing listening exercise, but we will also cover why empathy is so important, yet there are many stumbling blocks when using empathy (or trying to use empathy).

Just writing about this module, helped me get excited about sharing it with future participants of the Scrum Master Pathway training.

Speaking of which:

Benefit from the very early bird prices for my first two Scrum Mastery pathway classes - one virtually and the other one in Munich, Germany (the latter being held in German)

Virtual course (24th and 25th of October): Click here

on-site course in Germany (10th and 11th of November): Click here

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