Scrum Masters of the agile project management universeApril 14, 2021
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If you are already deep into project management, especially for complex projects around media and building digital assets, you are likely very familiar with agile project management. But if you are new to the software industry as a tech builder, being made responsible for completing a build project, or possibly interviewing for a new job in project management, agile project management may still be a fuzzy concept.
Without getting into the greater depths of agile project management, Agile is a management framework that relies heavily on high quality communication amongst your team with a focus on delivering outcomes within Sprints, or the durations of a project segment. Within these Sprints decision making should be made around the most relevant project data available, not what was known 2-4 weeks ago during initial planning. Agile managed projects have the ability to adjust the plan and resources to fit ad hoc needs. Project adjustments may come from ongoing quality assurance (QA) testing during the project build, and the support of a constant feedback loop from the end user or client.
What is a Scrum Master in project management?
A Scrum Master is a vital player in your project team. They are not responsible for planning the tasks for a Scrum Team to complete in a Sprint’s backlog. They also don’t make management decisions around the project. They don’t even hold a responsibility to the launch of a Sprint or completed product. These are all responsibilities under a Product Owner.
Scrum Masters VS Project Managers
What they are is a Project Champion or a Servant Leader. Working as a team coach, the Scrum Master arranges and facilitates all Scrum Ceremonies such as: Initial Sprint Planning Sessions, Kick-off Meetings, Daily Standups, Sprint Reviews, and Sprint Retros.
They are also not to be confused with Project Managers. Instead, Scrum Masters work as a liaise for the Product Owner, guiding them through the tech build process and relaying Owner concerns to the team. For the Project Manager, a Scrum Master works to facilitate the timely meetings between the project team, while working with Project Members to learn about their problems and project Blockers earlier and helping them find ways to remove these barriers of progress.
How to become a Scrum Master for agile project management
If you are interested in working within project management within the technology space, getting your Scrum Master Certification (CSM) is a great accreditation for entering the space. There are a number of groups that offer this training and certification, and it requires about 20~ hours of instruction often followed by a multiple-choice test of 30-40 questions. You can receive your Scrum Master Certification from training groups such as Scrum Alliance, or Mountain Goat Software.