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Are you a Scrum Master? – How to be Agile in business

By Suzanne Kiraly - 16 March 2017 0

agile methodology

Scrum Master? No, I am not talking about rugby. So if you tuned in for that reason, then I am sorry to disappoint you!

What I am talking about is something that is gaining momentum throughout the world and is just beginning to be in demand in Australia.

For business owners, the Agile movement and the principles inherent in the system are invaluable for productivity. From the one-man band, through to SMEs with small teams, and up to the larger corporations, this process-driven system will increase productivity dramatically.

I first learnt about this late last year, and now I did a comprehensive course right here in Canberra. It was one of the most life -changing experiences for me, as a creative and a writer, and when I adopted these principles, it saw my productivity go through the roof! I would imagine that teams implementing such systems would see the same results, if not better.

Recently my Scrum Masters course was through TheLearningDeli.com more about them later. For me, it was about learning how to be a Scrum Master, not because I want to be one, but because I want to hire one in the near future. As a consultant who works with many contractors, it is something I think I will need in the very near future. So it was a good idea to do a Scrum Masters Course, and I would encourage all business owners to do one too. Government departments could benefit as well.

So what is the Agile Movement all about, and what is a Scrum Master exactly? I will quote from the Agile methodology.org site:

What Is Agile?

“It’s not a methodology! It’s rather, a process-driven system to produce exceptional results. The Agile movement seeks alternatives to traditional project management. Agile approaches help teams respond to unpredictability through incremental, iterative work cadences and empirical feedback. Agilists propose alternatives to ‘Waterfall’ or traditional sequential development systems.”

What is Scrum?

“Scrum is a management framework for incremental product development, using one or more cross-functional, self-organizing teams of about seven people each. It provides a structure of roles, meetings, rules, and artefacts. Teams are responsible for creating and adapting their processes within this framework.

Scrum uses fixed-length iterations, called Sprints. Sprints are no more than 30 days long, preferably shorter. Scrum teams try to build a potentially releasable (properly tested) product increment every Sprint.” (Michael James & Luke Walter from collab.net)

Scrum has only three roles: Product Owner, Team, and Scrum Master.

Now, as a solo consultant (I am a digital publishing consultant and book coach by day), working with many contractors, on many different publishing projects, and being time poor, it is crucial that I organise my teams in such a way as to get things done efficiently and cost effectively for my clients. That’s being Agile – having a Scrum team to work efficiently together on my clients’ publishing projects for the best outcomes for all – saving time and money, but better still (and most importantly), for me – raising productivity and having the team enjoy the experience of publishing.

The Course is right here in Canberra

I took my two-day course right in the heart of the city, through The Learning Deli’s “Deliversity” – don’t you love that term? As far as I know, they are the only company who offers it in Canberra and they have snagged an extraordinary trainer emanating from the US!

Alistair Sloley (CSM, CSPO, CSP, PSM I, PSD) is an Agile consultant, specialising in Agile training, agile coaching and software development best practices training. A fifteen year veteran of Microsoft, Alistair shipped in over ten Microsoft products, worked with Microsoft research on multiple high profile projects and helped to lead his organisation into enterprise-level implementation of Scrum.

“Alistair’s middle name may as well be ‘Agile’.”

He has led Agile transformation efforts at a variety of clients including Baker Hughes, Cisco, Integrated DNA Technologies, Intel, Nordeus, Nordstrom, Satori Software, Shell, and Starbucks. – In other words, he knows his stuff!

And I found him to be a really effective trainer who can communicate at many levels, which is important for little, old non-nerdy me!

I couldn’t recommend this course highly enough, especially if you are in business or in government, and drowning in everyday operations. Or if you just think your processes could simply be much better. As the CEO, you should go along to see what it’s all about – and then, send your staff.

You’ll be so glad you did!

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