Scrum Master answers the questions of their colleagues

When an organization first introduces Scrum to projects, teams may feel insecure about their work. In this article, we present sample answers to the Scrum Master role to other project members such as designers, project managers, and programmers.

Question from the project manager

Can I keep my current role as a project manager and not participate in Scrum roles?

Scrum Master answers: The project management position is generally typical of traditional (Waterfall) project management. If Gergana has to participate in the project, then she is either part of the business (stakeholder) or part of the development team. She can keep her PM function on the Scrum team, but will only be part of the Scrum team if she works on project tasks. But then her main title may not be project manager, because it conflicts with Scrum. Reference: Professional Scrum Master vs Professional Scrum Developer, stc-montreal.org

If it is part of the stakeholders, it will be communicated with through PO, ie. she will not participate directly in the meetings.

Question from the technical manager

I don't see Scrum supporting my role. What will this mean for my career in our company?

No, there is no such role in Scrum. The answer is very close to the above. It needs to be clarified whether the technical manager is a manager (managerial position), or more precisely a ‘developer’, a specialist.

Regarding his career, he can either be hired as a stakeholder or become part of the development team. Again, the rule is that if he is working on project tasks, he can join the Scrum team, but if not, he must be part of the management.

He could also be some kind of consultant - to be consulted by the Scrum team if needed. But then again it is not part of the team, but an external resource.

Question from a graphic designer

Do I have to take part in the Scrum events that are being talked about? 

I'm a designer and I don't see the point in attending meetings that don't concern our design. If I have to participate in these modern introductions, I can easily find a job in another company.

Yes, you must participate unless the team explicitly exempts you from doing so. The idea here is that in Scrum the team works together and together decides how to solve the tasks. Even if there is no specific task related to the design at the given moment, this does not mean that such a need will not arise in the process of planning and discussing other tasks. Then it would be extremely important for a person with your qualifications to be in the right place at the right time. It is also believed that ideas and views on solving problems in general (other people's tasks, not yours) are welcome - sometimes someone else on the team may tend to solve the problem in one direction, without even knows that this can be a design problem, for example. The team thinks together and everyone can contribute. References: Scrum Sprint Review meeting Questions and Answers, policymatters.net and Problems of the Scrum Master role with the Sprint Review and Scrum Sprint Retrospective meetings, nebraskasocialstudies.org

Question from a programmer

I do not understand exactly how Scrum will improve our work. Can you give simple explanations?

What improves the work is that the team meets daily and talks about progress and problems. The team has people with different functions - coordinator, a member who can communicate directly with those interested in the project, as well as close specialists (including you, as a programmer). What Scrum helps with is that we can without much loss fit a product that for one reason or another is unsatisfactory and does not give business value to those interested - our stakeholders. This is fast as the nature of planning in Scrum is divided into short sprints. In our field, the product may be 'outdated' or unnecessary, or simply unsuitable for needs - so we can easily respond and all those who are responsible and can 'make' the change work are in place.

The good thing about Scrum is that things happen in small steps, spoon by spoon. You will have a timely test, feedback, and good planning so you can; correct mistakes. You will have a clear visualization and an idea of ​​the increment - not the whole product is of particular importance here and now, but only those things that the Product Owner, in agreement with the stakeholders, has decided to be a priority. Only those things that you have explicitly committed to and promised to finish on time. There will be no unplanned tasks.

You will know exactly what you need to do, what acceptance criteria (DoD), for when. And last but not least - WHY, what business value it will have and how you will contribute to the increment and the final product.

Question from a Senior Public Relations Expert

I am very excited about integrating Scrum into our work and I can't wait to get started. Can anyone tell me what and how I will do exactly?

Again, it needs to be clarified whether she is a consultant, whether she is working on the project, or is from the business, or whether she is the PR of the company itself. Sounds pretty much like it's part of the company's PR. It may be from the business, but again it depends on whether you just use the final product and set criteria and requirements for how to make it. I guess she will remain PR and will not be part of the Scrum team, respectively she will continue to do what she has been doing so far.

Question from Advertising Manager

I read a bit about Scrum and would like to be appointed to the Product Owner position. 

Please answer whether my request will be granted.

If she is hired as a Product Owner, we need to make sure she is aware of Agile's principles. For now, it is part of the management, specifically advertising management. The extent to which this covers her knowledge of the product and her ability to decide whether or not to prioritize specific tasks is questionable. In any case, we must first make sure that she knows the product and the vision of the stakeholders before we can appoint her as a Product Owner. Also at least to know who they are and to know their work and their interests. Reference: What makes a good Product Owner and what do they do?, scrumtime.org

Question from Project Coordinator

I would like to participate in Scrum roles as Project Owner. 

I do not mind fulfilling all my current duties, as well as being assigned new ones, which I would gladly learn and master.

This sounds a lot more encouraging than the previous ones. PO has a pretty big coordinating role at the project level. Again, the comment is about knowing the Agile principles - and almost everything that applied to an advertising manager. He must understand the goals and the product to be able to make decisions about the priority of the tasks or possibly major changes (in the final product).

Question from the Head of quality control

I would like to join the Scrum team as a Quality Master, or something like that if possible.

This is also OK. QA and testing - they are part of the Scrum development team. In large organizations, there is also a stakeholder-level test - a manager sounds a little loud, but in the end, he may just be a more qualified member of a team of testers.

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