Certified Scrum Master is a popular profession today, especially in software companies. Project management today has new features.
Scrum framework is one of them. And the number of certified specialists in the field is increasing every year.
In the article, we share a real presentation of a student enrolled in a Certified Scrum Master course.
Why do you want to be a Certified Scrum Master?
I will start with a short introduction, which will largely answer the question asked about why I want to be a Certified Scrum Master.
For about a year now, I have been assigned to the position of Scrum Master (but not certified yet) and my duties are related to leading projects of various natures. The department I work in is responsible for optimizing various processes in the company. The team is small and consists of 10 people – four project managers and five developers (front-end and back-end developers). Reference: “Why do you want to be a Certified Scrum Master?“, https://agileprogramming.org/why-do-you-want-to-be-a-certified-scrum-master/
Scrum Developers mainly deal with several internally created applications (Applications) serving various processes in the organization, such as a system for administering contracts and payments to suppliers; a Help Desk type application through which document processing requests from various departments pass, and two other applications.
Project managers are involved in participating in various projects as well as leading the development team.
In this regard, organizing the work of small teams to achieve a relatively fast and quality result in the field of software development is my daily task, and all practices related to the optimization of this process are of interest to me. Reference: “The Scrum Master answers the questions of confused colleagues about Scrum“, https://managerspost.com/the-scrum-master-answers-the-questions-of-confused-colleagues-about-scrum/
My duties are related to continuous interaction and communication with the team of developers, project managers, product owners, management, and partners, regarding various requests aimed at facilitating processes in the company or providing a new product/service to customers.
The business environment and technologies are changing quite dynamically, the demands of users (even within the organization) for products and applications are growing, and the periods in which it is required to achieve a result are becoming shorter and shorter. This puts the team in which I work in front of many in number and different challenges and we are constantly looking for ways and solutions to organize our work better and be more efficient.
I decided to enroll in this course as I believe that I will gain valuable knowledge that will build on my experience so far and possibly introduce additional models and approaches that I can apply practically in my current position.
What do you expect from being a Certified Scrum Master?
My expectations from the Certified Scrum Master profession are to be more efficient in my daily tasks, to improve communication with my team, as well as with the other participants involved in the various developments, and to actively participate in achieving higher results, meeting the set deadlines. My goal is to improve my skills to:
- Prioritization of objectives;
- Control over the quality of the results;
- Applying different approaches when communicating with interested parties; to extract maximum benefit for the team and the development;
- Maintaining continuous high motivation for myself and colleagues;
- A deeper understanding of the principles of managing small teams.
What concerns do you have about working as a Certified Scrum Master?
My main concerns about being a Certified Scrum Master are related to the fact that the number of tasks is large, as well as the requests from the product owners and senior management and their effective distribution among the participants, and meeting short deadlines turns out to be a difficult mission. Often it happens that we are overloaded, have difficulties in distributing the duties, and go beyond the set deadlines.
Resources for Certified Scrum Master candidates: Preparation for Scrum Master Certification exam:
- Reference: “Preparation for PSM, CSM, and BVOSM Scrum Master certification exam with sample questions“, https://www.policymatters.net/preparation-for-psm-csm-and-bvosm-scrum-master-certification-exam-with-sample-questions/
- Source: “Preparation for Certified Scrum Master certification exam with sample questions”, https://www.azarnewsonline.com/preparation-for-certified-scrum-master-certification/
- Original article: “Preparation for Certified Scrum Master certification exam with sample questions“, https://www.shihannews.net/preparation-for-certified-scrum-master-certification-exam/
- Reference article: “Example questions for the Scrum Master certification exam“, https://customer-service-us.com/example-questions-for-the-scrum-master-certification-exam/
- Preparation website: “Preparation for the certification exam for CSM and PSM I (BVOSM) Scrum Master“, https://www.mu7club.com/preparation-for-certification-exam-scrum-master/
- Original website: “Certified Scrum Master exam preparation with sample questions“, https://customessaysonline.net/certified-scrum-master-exam-preparation-with-sample-questions/
- Preparation source: “Preparation for the Certified Scrum Master exam (PSM, CSM, BVOSM)“, https://mpmu.org/preparation-for-the-certified-scrum-master-exam-psm-csm-bvosm/
- Visit original reference: “Preparation for Scrum Master certification exam on Sprint event“, https://medfd.org/preparation-for-scrum-master-certification-exam-on-sprint-event/
- Reference: “Professional Scrum Master Certification Online“, https://pm.mba/posts/scrummaster-certification-online/
- Original article: “Preparation for Scrum Master certification and tips for Scrum professionals”, https://www.kievpress.info/preparation-for-scrum-master-certification/
- Source: “Preparation with sample questions for Scrum Master certification exam CSM & PSMI”, https://wikipedia-lab.org/preparation-sample-questions-scrummaster-certification-exam/
- Applicants go here: “Free preparation for the Scrum Master certification exam (CSM, PSMI, PSMII, BVOP)”, https://brightonbot.com/preparation-scrum-master-certification-exam/
- Visit the blog article: “Free training to prepare for the Scrum Master Certification exam”, https://www.islandjournal.net/scrum-master-certification-exam/
- Original reference: “Best Scrum Master Certifications for 2022 and 2023“, https://eduwiki.me/best-scrum-master-certifications-for-2021-and-2022/
- Website of ScrumTime: “Best Scrum Master certification online”, https://scrumtime.org/best-scrum-master-certification-online/
- Visit source: “Preparation for the Scrum Master certification exam (BVOSM, CSM, PSM)“, https://mstsnl.net/preparation-for-the-scrum-master-certification-exam-bvosm-csm-psm/
- Reference here: “Quick and easy preparation for the Scrum Master certification exam“, https://www.businesspad.org/quick-and-easy-preparation-for-the-scrum-master-certification-exam/
What challenges do you think you will face in your job as a Certified Scrum Master?
Currently, as an uncertified Scrum Master, I face difficulties of a different nature in my work, but the main challenges are:
The concentration on critical developments and issues, given a large number of other operational day-to-day tasks for me and the team;
Prioritizing requests to the team;
Application of effective methods for continuous monitoring of the results of the team’s work;
Channelization of communication with the various units, to extract the maximum amount of information on a specific development;
Providing the tasks in an understandable form to the developers;
Maintaining team motivation.
- Source: “Scrum framework: Questions and Answers“, https://www.kosovatimes.net/scrum-framework-questions-and-answers/
- Source: “Sprint Review event in Scrum with examples“, https://medfd.org/sprint-review-event-in-scrum-with-examples/
- Reference: “Lessons for Scrum Master certification and practicing professionals“, https://newia.info/lessons-for-scrum-master-certification-and-practicing-professionals/
- Source: “The certified Scrum Master manages projects wisely and professionally”, https://www.islandjournal.net/certified-scrum-master-manages-projects-wisely/
- Source: “Why do you want to be a certified Scrum Master?“, https://www.mmrls.org/why-certified-scrummaster/
- Source: “How to become a Scrum Master“, https://brightonbot.com/how-to-become-a-scrum-master/
- Source: “Scrum and Kanban: similarities and differences“, https://www.policymatters.net/scrum-and-kanban-similarities-and-differences/
- Source: “The differences between Scrum and Kanban methods of working in Agile projects“, https://www.kievpress.info/differences-between-scrum-and-kanban-agile/
- Source: “Why apply Scrum to your company projects“, https://www.worldforgemagazine.com/why-apply-scrum-to-your-company-projects/
- Source: “Why do you want to be a Scrum Master?“, https://www.libraryofmu.org/why-want-to-be-scrum-master/
- Source: “Working on projects with Scrum and Kanban“, https://eduwiki.me/projects-with-scrum-and-kanban-which-to-choose/
- Source: “Why do you want to be a Scrum Master?“, https://www.mu7club.com/why-scrum-master/
- Source: “The Best Scrum Master Certification for Agile Professional Development“, https://bvop.org/scrummaster/
- Source: “Scrum Master and their relationship with the team and stakeholders“, https://www.islandjournal.net/scrum-master-role-relationship-team-stakeholders/
- Source: “When to use the Scrum framework in your projects“, https://www.muzonet.com/when-to-use-the-scrum-framework-in-your-projects/
- Source: “Scrum Master explains the roles to colleagues in the Scrum project“, https://securityinformationeventmanagement.com/scrum-master-explains-the-roles-to-colleagues/
- Source: “Why do you want to be a Scrum Master?”, https://ossalumni.org/why-do-you-want-to-be-a-scrum-master/
- Source: “Scrum Master instead of the project manager”, https://60yearsnato.info/scrum-master-instead-of-project-manager/
The Certified Scrum Master candidate answers questions to demonstrate their knowledge
To become a Certified Scrum Master, every candidate must have an excellent knowledge of all Scrum details. A Certified Scrum Master must be able to master any situation. We asked Kate O’Brien, who has already answered the above questions, a few topics to test her knowledge.
Your team wants to go on vacation and they ask you to postpone your sprint retrospective until the beginning.
According to the Scrum methodology, the sprint retrospective can be postponed until the start of the next sprint. Because it is necessary to clarify the problems that arose before the team during the previous sprint.
The client asks you to email them a summary of your meeting with the team and your thoughts on the Sprint Review meeting.
The summary of the Sprint Review meeting will be sent, not by me, but by the Product Owner, because he knows the client’s requirements better and will be more valuable, with a recommendation that he must attend the next meeting or at least have a representative from his side, nevertheless, this type of meeting should be attended not only by the roles from the “Scrum” team but also by representatives of all parties
Your director wants you to remove several large User Stories from the end-of-sprint schedule and replace them with smaller ones that you can find in the general list.
Sprints are created at sprint meetings with the team, then it is determined which tasks will be completed and they do not change until the end of the deadline that is set. Tasks that have not been completed are transferred back to the “board” and it is decided when they will be included for execution, usually, they will be executed already in the next sprint. So the sprint remains with the tasks approved like this, it is not a problem that there would be a few left for the next time, this would not lead to an increase in the overall deadline for the product implementation.
The team tells you that they are done with all their work two days before the end of the sprint and asks you to arrange a meeting with the customer to conduct the Sprint Review meeting with them.
Termination of the Sprint itself is not within my authority, this decision must be made by the Product Owner. I will consult with the Product Owner to find out if this will be possible and if so I will arrange it, if not I will convey to the team that this will not happen.
Your team tells you that they prefer not to work to a precise fixed time for the sprints, but prefer that each sprint have a duration according to their work and their judgment.
I’m against this, I think it’s a mistake and sprints should be of equal duration. Work during the sprint should be selected according to its timing, not the other way around. My role as a Scrum Master requires just that, to make sure the processes are followed and that things happen as written by the books.
Your assigned Product Owner on the project is away on a business trip to the client and has sent you the Sprint Goal for the next sprint this morning.
I will use the materials that the “Product Owner” has prepared and I will hope that the team and I will understand as precisely as possible what is required.
The Product Owner of the project has sent you an email stating that he will be gathering detailed information on many details and plans to follow up with the customer
Collecting detailed information is a good practice, but I’m not sure it’s a good idea to plan the work for a long time ahead. The main advantage of Scrum is that it is “flexible”. Long-term work planning should only serve as a guide.
You are coming back from vacation. The project team and Product Owner tell you that there is no time and the sprint should start without planning.
The sprint must always be planned, if this is not done, chaos ensues, and no one knows what he is doing when he should be ready and what exactly is expected of him. The fact that the User story is at the top of the Product Backlog collection does not always mean that it is the most important and urgent thing to work on.
Your Product Owner role has shared with the team that certain functionality is expected in a few months. Your team is planning to research the technology as of now.
Doing research isn’t a bad practice as long as it doesn’t interfere with the workflow. It’s always good to keep the team up-to-date on new technologies, but by the time we get to the far-flung problems, there may be much better solutions by then, they may not be as big as they seem now, and they may not even be reached at all. , it is not known what direction the product will take.
A member of your team has just started working on a User Story that he expects to be scheduled for the next sprint.
The stories in the Sprint are selected by the Product Owner and the team at the Sprint Planning meeting, they are worked on until the next Sprint. Team members do not choose for themselves what to work on, and they certainly do not work on a User Story that is destined for a future Sprint.
A team member expresses dissatisfaction with the idea of everyone knowing what the other is working on.
This is not the Scrum model of work, it is not even teamwork and it is unacceptable. The team does not consider one person, but everyone, individual guarantees for results and time mean nothing.
Your colleague, the Scrum Master of your organization, meets you in the hallway and asks for advice on the length of his team’s sprint.
The length of the Sprint depends on the experience of the team, nature of work, deadlines, time of year, and a bunch of other factors. It is possible to do 2 test sprints at the beginning of the project to find out who best suits the team’s pace. After that, a length must be chosen for all project development sprints. If it is not sufficient, the tasks should be reduced, if it is excessive, the tasks should be increased, but not the Sprint should be changed.
The Product Owner role on your team wants to change the sprint duration to 6 weeks.
The length of the Sprint should not change, it breaks the rhythm of work, no matter how complex the work is. If necessary, the task will be broken into small parts that fit the length of the Sprint. Better to delay product functionality than to create a poor-quality product.
You receive an email from your client’s Project Manager. It asks if there is any problem if your sprint is 6 business days. He expects a quick response so he knows what to pass on to his superiors.
Six working days is quite a short time for a Sprint, according to the minimum it should be 2 weeks or 10 working days, this allows the team not to feel pressed for time, leaves room for some unforeseen situations, and time for an adequate reaction.
Your director wants you to time your sprints to one work week.
In a short Sprint, the team is always up to date with the new requirements, there are more frequent meetings, retrospectives, and planning, this reduces the risk of mistakes in understanding the wishes of the stakeholders, but creates a sense of urgency, increases the pressure on the team, mistakes are made due to haste and neglect and reduces product quality.