How To Be A Scrum Master On A High-Performing Team?

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Last updated on
19th Apr, 2021
Published
21st Feb, 2018
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How To Be A Scrum Master On A High-Performing Team?

This might sound unfavorable for the Scrum Masters! If a team, more precisely, an Agile team is already performing well, what is the need for a Scrum Master at all? Such teams and their managers might dismiss the idea of a Scrum Master altogether. Therefore, to establish yourself as a Scrum Master in teams which were running fine without you can be more than just a challenge. 

However, all you need is a few strong strides. A proper understanding of the Scrum Master necessities will help you create the place, your very own space, in successful Scrum teams. The main factors of a Scrum Master in a high-performing team should be clear to you, alongside the unique characteristics of Agile teams. Else, it might be difficult for you to convince the team members as to why they actually need a Scrum Master. 
 

Characteristics of high-performing teams:

  • The high-performing team should be able to define a team purpose.
  • The high-performing team takes an individual and mutual accountability of the result obtained by the team as a whole.
  • The high-performing team produces a project output collectively.
  • The high-performing team does open-ended discussions and has excellent decision-making capacity.
  • The high-performing team moves with the points discussed in the daily Scrum. Team members should be constructive at every decision produced by other team members. This will eliminate conflicts among the team members.

They should see you as an enabler who can spearhead functional Agile teams. 

Here is a whole new slew of hacks to explore new ways to make the best out of such teams-

1.Providing a fresh perspective every time:

Being an entrant as a Scrum Master in the high performing team, you need to catch up with the details of the organization’s working processes for the sake of you and of course, the team. For acquiring the details from the team (and also about the team), the new Scrum Master should ask some questions to the teammates.This would help him/her learn what the team is following to accomplish a task. Consider one example of a simple question this Scrum Master can ask the team-

Why do we work on several user stories and progressing bugs at the same moment? 

Very simply, the team members responded that once they finish one task they start the next. 

This works, but at times, results in a testing bottleneck. It can be successful if we limit the number of progressing tasks. You have to ensure that the ratio between the tasks in development and testing stages can be managed at all times. This will give you an enhanced productivity. 

While gathering the project requirements from the client, a designer can work with the Product Owner and transform the project requirements into visual designs. The Scrum Master can provide a fresh perspective every time on the graphics and workflows to ensure a better performance. 

2. Checking daily status:

At an entry level, the Scrum Master feels himself/herself as a secondary option in the team especially when he/she is not aware of the team and their working approach. In this case, a Scrum Master has to play a trick to get into the game. But how?

Firstly, Scrum Master can keep a record of the daily status of the team members in following ways:

  • How is each team member doing?
  • Stress levels
  • Whether they are individually fit or not
  • Whether team is following Scrum framework properly

This will help you understand the team members and their current status.  
3. Get ready to help the team personally:

Simply checking on the daily status is not enough, being a Scrum Master. Also, calling out orders at the team without keeping any idea of. the present position won’t work. In order to become supportive, the Scrum Masters need to get involved in the high-performing team. They can support QA (Quality Analysis) team in testing the applications in order to build an even higher performing team. 

  • Scrum Master can act as a third eye in finding out flaws in developer’s attention, 
  • Specifying Scrum team roles   
  • Covering the areas which the team may have missed
  • Giving (the team) an opportunity to convey useful ideas to the Scrum Master

4. Manage the backlog:

One of the Scrum Master’s roles and responsibilities involves discussing with the Product Owner and the project stakeholders regarding their requirements. Once the designs are created, the Scrum Master can create a list of high-level user stories and add them to the Product Backlog items for use during Product Backlog Refinement sessions. 

The Product Backlog should be split into the sections, well-organized and easy to implement. This will furnish the team with a proper visibility towards their work without jumbling up the requirements.

5. Tracking action items during Retrospectives:



Retrospectives provide the best way for the Scrum Master to ask questions and unearth the needful. The Scrum Master in the high-performing team can introduce new retrospective techniques after every alternate sprint, which can keep the processes running smoothly. Most importantly, these techniques will help the Scrum teams to-

  • Inspect the team and the processes
  • Discuss healthily
  • Raise the new ideas
  • Pull out action items during discussion

This will allow a Scrum Master to remind the team about their incomplete tasks, and also the accomplished tasks weekly.  

6. Rejoice in the team success:



Scrum is simple, but hard to execute. So it is always recommended to celebrate the success whenever it comes. This will help the team to stay focussed on their target and connect the points between work and target. If the team is high-performing, then being a Scrum Master it is your duty to shout their successes to keep the team more engaged.

Last Words-

It is not more important that the team should consist of the ‘high-profile individual’ rather than their actual working. Culture plays a vital role in team performance. If there is a defined culture, it will be easy for the team members to follow suit. In case you are using the Scrum framework, firstly ensure that your team knows Scrum. Secondly, the team should follow a proper working culture under the guidance of the Scrum Master. Yes, definitely, an efficient one! 

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