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SM behavior during daily

Last post 05:57 pm February 14, 2020 by Timothy Baffa
7 replies
05:56 pm February 12, 2020

Hi everyone, 

I have a question, as as scrum master during the daily scrum i noticed one member of Development team tend to discuss in a lot of details consuming 50 percent of the time allowed to the daily scrum.

Should i coach him in the middle of daily by interrupting him or discuss the issue after the meeting ? 

09:47 pm February 12, 2020

As a team, are they completing their Daily Scrum events in 15 minutes or less?

Keep in mind that the Daily Scrum is a Development Team event for them to inspect progress toward the Sprint Goal, and determine their plan for the next 24 hours.   

Do you feel a Scrum Master interrupting a Development Team member during the Daily Scrum promotes the purpose of this Scrum event?

09:56 pm February 12, 2020

Should i coach him in the middle of daily by interrupting him or discuss the issue after the meeting ? 

Why not both?

One of the responsibilities of the Scrum Master is to facilitate Scrum events as requested or needed. Although the Scrum Guide also says that "the Development Team is responsible for conducting the Daily Scrum" and that the "Daily Scrum is an internal meeting for the Development Team", it seems like the Development Team doesn't yet have good habits for conducting the event and the argument could be made that facilitation is still needed in order to teach the team good habits for completing the objectives of the event within the timebox.

Keeping the meeting moving during the event as well as more personal coaching and advising outside of the Daily Scrum would both potentially be appropriate to use. Knowing what would be effective and least disruptive depends on the individual and the relationship between him and the Scrum Master.

10:57 pm February 12, 2020

Part of the role of the Scrum Master is to teach and coach the team members to understand Scrum rules, events and artifacts. 
Make sure the team understands the purpose of the daily and the purpose of its timebox. 

Also, based on this, ask the Development Team, maybe in the Sprint Retrospective event, how they could make the daily more efficient. In my team, they came up with the Parking Lot technique. In other words, every time any member goes beyond what other team member considers relevant for the daily inspection and adapt loop focused on the Sprint goal, he should suggest this member that is talking to bring this subject to the Parking Lot (to be addressed after the daily with the members relevant to this discussion).

11:17 pm February 12, 2020

during the daily scrum i noticed one member of Development team tend to discuss in a lot of details consuming 50 percent of the time allowed to the daily scrum.

It sounds as though people are trying to take it in turns to do something. If so, what is it, and what is the expected outcome of the meeting?

11:32 pm February 12, 2020

You may also want to check if these "details" are necessary to know for everyone in the development team or not. At times, team members want to know what's happening on the surface, but not in too much detail unless something is blocking a particular work item.

What I did with one of my teams was introduced a SAFE word - which anyone can use as a signal that the discussion may not be relevant to the original point, and is going down a different tangent. And a SAFE word can be anything - i used "Cheese tart". Remember that it can also be as simple as raising hand - not just by SM but any team member.

Such lengthy discussions can be had after the standup with only the required team members - 2 or 3, and others can move on with their work for the day. 

Hope it helps.

07:12 pm February 13, 2020

I like to differ with Timothy here.

I personally do intervene during the daily scrum as well as coach outside daily scrum ceremony. Else, that person will take 15 mins as well while other team members wait in frustration. 


05:57 pm February 14, 2020

Certainly there are coaching opportunities for a Scrum Master that present themselves throughout the sprint.   My preference though is to let things play out, and even allow the team to fail from time to time, so that they can feel the pain and be more willing to acknowledge undesirable behaviors/practices and try something different.

Sometimes, a Scrum Master stepping in to keep a team member from touching a hot stove can keep the team member safe temporarily, but may not teach that person the actual consequences of touching that hot stove.

Failure creates the right conditions for change.

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