Helping the team is not doing everything for the team

Apr 25
2 min read

The Scrum Master must exercise servant leadership for his team, but beware of misunderstanding what it is to serve a team.

Our job is to get a team of people who are increasingly able to solve their problems, not to solve them all and create a group that depends on us for everything.

The point is that, especially in the early phases of the team, perhaps their perspective does not allow them to identify many of the improvements they need. To the teams at the beginning the trees do not let them see the forest or the other way around.

I believe that the good leader is in charge of providing the environment, the tools and conditions for the team to grow. Direct intervention, especially with teams with a minimum of maturity, should be only done when there is no other remedy or the consequences of not doing so can be serious. This implies not only patience and coaching with the team itself but also managing the nerves and doubts of other members of the organisation. That is clearly a space that we must win for the team.

Sometimes the solution may be one they do not dare to apply, for example, out of fear of the company’s reaction. The Scrum Master will have to assess if it is time to act for them or pave the way for them to do it alone.

Perhaps it is not clear how to solve their internal communication problems. Decide if you should tell them and explain how to solve it or it is better to provide them with tools to know how to deal with them both now and in the future.

My approach is to encourage them to grow in responsibility as they have already controlled others. But this must always be destined to take a step towards independence. He never made his dependence on you.

Always think about the team of the future. How can it become? What needs to change so that they can become it?

It is also not responsible to just ask questions and do nothing for them. You have to be able to understand the moment in which each team and each individual is and, depending on this, accompany them in the process but not do it for them.

What you have to keep in mind is that everything you can help them solve for themselves is a new focus that you can work outside the team to make their area and their confidence even bigger.

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