This Blog is a 5-Part Series | Part -4
March 16, 2021 | BY Sarfraz Aaron, CSM, SSM, PMP
Welcome back to part 4 of my journey to becoming a Scrum Master.
Now I am at a point where I feel I have sufficient knowledge and experience to work as an effective scrum master but what else could I do?
This blog is a 5-part series that I will go over my professional career life journey, highlighting my thought process, what options were available and what decisions I took (good & bad!) that got me to this point.
Excel in your own way
I spent good time analyzing and working on ways to increase my reach to other IT professionals where I can share my experience, tips and techniques. One great way was to focus on having an online presence. So in this blog I am going to take you through the digital journey of creating my first online content and marketing.
At this stage of my career I felt I am very focused on agile/scrum and held few contracts as a scrum master, and at all times tried to ensure the scrum team I worked with was working as efficient as possible. Some of the methods I applied were coaching on 1:1 or at a group level, explaining some of the metrics on the work undertaken in a sprint, and finally communicating and reporting to management/stakeholders. Keeping everyone in the loop and providing a collaborative and cohesive environment.
My focus was always to increase the scrum team's maturity level of understanding and application of agile/scrum so that each team member felt confident in their ability and master the scrum framework! For example, activities like creating or breaking down user stories, how to estimate in story points, how to prepare and execute an effective sprint demo, and what entailed in a good sprint retrospective. Each member of the scrum team was made to feel part of a one, self-organizing and efficient team and above all - everyone was recognized and appreciated!
Was there more that I could do?
I thought of ways of having a greater reach. Since I was active on LinkedIn platform, I began to get requests from other IT professionals to help them in getting jobs as a scrum master or even as a project manager. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many skilled people were looking for jobs and it made the selection process very competitive.
While doing my best to help out, I quickly realized that a lot people had recently passed their scrum master certifications but lacked the confidence to work as an effective scrum master. I was busy explaining various agile/scrum principles and sharing tips and techniques but it seemed like, people wanted more practical tips and ways of working to help them to be effective in their roles.
Clearly I could see this was a gap and I decided to think of ways to help and identify if there was an opportunity here!
I had started working on my online presence business case and had a few ideas into which digital channels to leverage, for example: Websites, YouTube channel or even LinkedIn platform. The goal was to provide an online content on agile/scrum in the form of Courses, Videos, Blog, Templates, Coaching and Training etc.
In 2020, I launched my first website called howtoscrum.com and created free and paid online courses, added videos & blog on key topics regarding scrum framework and uploaded free ready to use templates. At the same time I started a YouTube channel called How To Scrum to target different audience group.
I soon got an amazing response from my website and the YouTube channel, and this was just the beginning of my new passion of being an agile coach or even a career coach. Candidates left great feedback on the courses and other content, encouraging me to continue making more content and play a critical role!
Difficult roads often lead to beautiful destinations
After launching my website and the YouTube channel, I felt a great self-accomplishment and excitement of endless opportunities going forward. My goal is to build howtoscrum.com into a better knowledge hub where one could find all agile/scrum content, tips and techniques.
As a future plan, I am considering a niche approach where I will train a person in agile/scrum framework, provide the best tips and techniques and finally to help them land a scrum master job. Watch this space!
I had really gained an amazing experience in building my website and creating the online content. The effort spent creating the online content was a one-time task and thereafter, it will always be globally available to everyone - accomplishing one of my goals of reaching out to the masses.
For my final part to this amazing journey, I want to talk about what I think would be the technology trends going forward and how as a scrum master one can be prepared and marketable.
I look forward to seeing you on my final part of How Did I Get Here? My Journey to Becoming a Scrum Master.