A Scrum master is like a leg in the tripod of the Scrum team, with the other two being the product owner and the development team. The partnership of the product owner with the business representative is balanced out by the Scrum master’s relationship with the development team. His role is to support the team in becoming self-organized, to remove any obstacles the team might be facing and to ensure that the Scrum methods is being followed. However, unlike the product owner online, he not play a management or supervisory role for the team.
The first step to being an effective Scrum master is to understand the principles of Scrum very well. As an element of this, he should be well aware of what Scrum can and cannot achieve. He must be sure that daily Scrum meetings are held and other important processes of Scrum are followed and that the team does not veer off course. It is important that a Scrum master knows how to use different tools and techniques such as tracking and value of metrics, and may have knowledge of software development process and other agile methodologies. What is even more important to become an effective Scrum master is to hone soft skills such as leadership and determination.
Following Scrum, especially when the team is not exposed to Scrum, can be challenging, and the change can sometimes be met with resistance. He will have to utilize a lot of persistence to overcome this and help create an atmosphere in which team members will stand behind Scrum.
He can assists the team by addressing any issues or removing any blocks that may stand in the team’s way. Possible issues could range from personality conflict to product ownership. He should facilitate the team, allowing it to self-organize and to determine the best way to deliver high value without compromising the ever-important Scrum methods.
An effective Scrum master will aim to establish an amicable relationship between the product owner and team members. A product owner might at times be controlling and demanding. It is the Scrum master’s responsibility to be the pacifier and help the team maintain its spirits and communicate effectively with the product owner to eliminate any issues.
An important aspect of agile is that it places “individuals and bad reactions over processes and tools. ” An effective Scrum Master acts as a servant-leader. When managing the team, he does not direct the team but leads by example and also serves it by removing any impediments and allowing it to decide the best way to grow and perform. Being a servant-leader entails that he re-communicates the project vision to ensure the team is heading in the right direction. As a leader, it is also his responsibility to encourage the team by offerings rewards to keep the team motivated to continuously improve.