APRIL. Lean Project Management: Roles – The Scrum Master

Zuloaga ImatgeBlog English, Newsletter 2014Leave a Comment

In our previous newsletter we introduced the role of Product Owner, who –as you recall– represents the client wanting the product or service. Continuing with the roles that participate in our LPM methodology, today we will talk about the role of Scrum Master.

The Scrum Master is the person who ensures the rules and procedures of the Lean Project Management methodology are followed. This role should not be confused with the figure of the director of a traditional project, as their task is project coordination. In fact, the individual who has this role is also a project team member with a technical role in the project development.

R_Scrum Master

The key Scrum Master responsibilities are:

  • Adapt the LPM methodology to the idiosyncrasy of the project, resources and people involved.
  • Ensure the correct application of the procedures and techniques and meeting the schedules.
  • Eliminate the impediments that may arise as the Team progresses with the project.
  • Ensure that the team is functional and effective at all points in time.

Defining what the Scrum Master is NOT can also help to clarify their role. The Scrum Master is NOT:

  • In charge of establishing the team´s tasks nor of defining the way they should be performed.
  • The auditor.
  • The secretary.

We will agree that the tasks of Scrum Master are also included in the role of director of traditional projects. However, in the case of the Scrum Master, their responsibilities stop with those mentioned above.

The Director of classic projects is the hierarchical referent for the work team and also the direct contact with the client. Because of the responsibilities associated with their hierarchy level, he is also expected to be the ”issue solver”, the “issue fixer” or the “issue delegator” depending on how he manages to solve the difficult situations that arise during the project life.

Therefore we can stay comfortable if we end up with the responsibility of Scrum Master, as we will not be required to assume the unpleasant expectations of the director. To start with, and as you already know, the traditional relationship with the client becomes in LPM a close coexistence. As far as the hierarchy is concerned, we will talk about the Team and how it is organized in our next newsletter.

Summing up, the Scrum Master is a species that will enjoy a pleasant life as long as two conditions are met: master the intricacies of the LPM methodology and have good emotional skills to tactfully manage the interactions of the project players.

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