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Koos Coach in the "This is not Scrum" Comic (episode 7)

April 20, 2020

In my daily life as a Scrum Master, I witness many crazy situations. I want to share my discoveries via this comic series featuring Koos Coach, the silly Scrum Master struggling to understand and master Scrum.



To get the best results, every team member needs to be involved in understanding and estimating all the work that needs to be done. In many teams “team-leads” or seniors estimate the work for other team members. This practice has several disadvantages. 

  • Loss of transparency. We do not know the true capability of the team, what we estimate is what the team-lead thinks is feasible. This increases the chances of unreliable planning.
  • Loss of ownership: With this practice, team members are being told what the estimate is, rather than thinking for themselves. Only when estimating by themselves, people take responsibility for the estimate and will learn from the outcome.
  • Loss of self-organization: The team-lead on the team tends to become a gate for the outside world, concentrating and filtering information and deciding on behalf of the team.

Can you think of other possible (positive) side-effects of this approach?

(Scrum) Master

scrum master minus scrum equals...

When Scrum is not deeply adopted and sticks to the level of “doing” instead of “being”, its effect can easily be interpreted as “causing more problems than it solves”:

Scrum makes clear the relative efficacy of your product management and work techniques so that you can continuously improve the product, the team, and the working environment. (SG)

In such cases, Scrum is likely to be abandoned and cast away as “just another management fad”. (The good thing about this approach is that the adoption of a different framework is lightweight: it takes no more than a “search and replace” of Scrum terminology). 


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