Transparency hurts

In my road to achieve Scrum Mastery I want to improve myself as a Scrum Master. How do you know what the next step for improvement is? First, you need to make transparent where you stand as a Scrum Master before you can inspect the next step in the evolution of the Scrum Master.

How do you make transparent on which level you act as a Scrum Master ? Ask for feedback of course! I prefer asking feedback on a regular basis face to face, but I’m also a fan of a data driven approach. As I’m writing this blog, tomorrow will be my last day as Scrum Master for my current client. I want to make transparent on what level I’ve been acting. That’s why I am using a tool called the State of Agility.

What is the State of Agility ?

It is a 360 degree feedback tool to assess me in my role as a Scrum Master. You can also see it as an Agile selfie. I asked different people to give me honest feedback by filling in the survey. The outcome of the Agile selfie is based on the evolution of a Scrum Master.

The outcome of the selfie

As you can see my peers gave a rating that differs from my own perspective and I have to admit: that did hurt my ego. My peers rated me as a “coach”, but I assessed myself as an “advisor”. These terms are described in the Evolution of the Scrum Master and also explained in the State of Agility.

Why dit it hurt my ego? Because I work as an Agile Coach at Prowareness, so I expected that I at least act on the level of “advisor” / “expert”. This is something I want to prove to myself that I’m capable of doing. Now the outcome of the assessment didn’t meet my expectations: I wanted to be open about my performance and combine this with a promotion of the tool a State of Agility, but after this outcome I wasn’t so sure.

My mind was telling me: “I can’t be that open and put it online in a post, because then people may see me as a fraud.” Or “what would the client think?” I also noticed that I wanted to explain what the circumstances where that led to the lower ratings of my peers. All kinds of obstructing thoughts, that were preventing me from continuing to write this blogpost.

Convert your obtrusive beliefs into empowering convictions!

For me this was a very confronting situation containing a big contradiction. It’s my job and purpose to make things transparent. ie. Help the Scrum Team to make transparent what is helping them and what is slowing them down, in their effort delivering a done increment. Being a Scrum Master is all about creating transparency, but when it gets personal I’m trying to be less open and less transparent. This was food for thought!

Last Friday I participated in a workshop, facilitated by Chris Hazeu and Matthijs de Booij about creating a new mindset with empowering convictions. I recognized my obstructive beliefs and I wanted to challenge them with a powerful conviction.

So I asked myself: What is the worst that could happen? Empiricism is about “learning by doing”, so I challenged myself to have the courage to just write about this contradiction.

Transparency = key to succes

I strongly believe to lead by example and make everything transparent unless there is a reason not to. So by this post I want to show my courage, openness and commitment. These values helps me to create trust in the fact that this post will help me in my journey to the Mastery of Scrum. My mission is to truly live up to the values and practice what you preach.  Now it’s your turn: What’s something you could be more transparent about but where obstructing thoughts are blocking you from doing so?


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