Roles

There are officially only 3 roles in Scrum:

  • The Product Owner
  • The Scum Master
  • And The Team

The Product Owner (PO)

This role is a mixture of the traditional roles of the Project Manager, Product Manager and the Customer. As far as the Team is concerned, the PO is the single voice of the customer in relation to the product. The PO makes all the executive decisions on what will be worked on from the Product Backlog. The Team don't have to speak to committees or different project sponsors for clarity on a product feature - the PO is the single voice that makes these product related decisions. The payoff of this is quick decisions, integration of the "customer" perspective in the evolving product design and confirmation for the Team that they are building what the "customer" has asked for.

The Scrum Master (SM)

The SM is a servant leader. What does that mean? Their primary purpose is to keep the team productive by coaching them and keeping them moving forward and ensuring that everyone understands Scrum. It is very much a set of soft skills, far removed from traditional project management where the Team would be told what to do. The SM has no authority in the Team, he is a member of the Team and has equal status with the Team. So how does the SM influence others to move forward, avoid and resolve conflicts and keep people productive? This is where the real depth and beauty of Scrum comes in. The founders of Scrum knew a lot about people and the psychology of motivation and how to get the most out of people. In our training we will present you with scenarios and engage in scenarios that you present us, and demonstrate how an effective SM can deal with these situations.

The Team

Traditionally, a team is delineated by titles, programmer, developer, tester, analyst, architect etc. Scrum promotes the concept of a cross-functional team where everyone is involved in the success of the project. This leads to more buy-in and less of and "us and them" attitude, and ultimately to a high-performing team.

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