As a Scrum Master did you ever face these situations where
- The daily stand-ups ran for more than 15 minutes?
- The Chickens interrupted the stand-ups or took it over?
- The issues concerning only 2 parties were resolved at stand-ups rather than being discussed offline or after stand-ups?
- The team members gave scrum updates to the Scrum Master rather than the team
- A team member gave one line updates or just mentioned “No updates today”?
As a scrum master, I have faced all the above mentioned situations and have resolved them successfully.
At times, I had to cut conversations and remind them that this is daily scrum stand-up of 15 minutes and NOT a status or a design meeting.
Sometimes chickens attend the scrum meeting and they might have something of real value to add to the conversations and I had stopped them from speaking up and asked them to take it after the scrum - this might seem unnecessary, but it’s needed to enforce scrum best practices.
During stand-ups, as team members go over their updates and bring up issues, I note them down. However, instead of trying to resolve the issues right there, after the stand-up I pair up team members to resolve these issues offline. For issues that concern the entire team, I ask them to resolve right after the stand-up.
Often I had noticed that some team members have a tendency to provide their updates to the Scrum Master. I had to educate them that stand-ups are for improving the communication and increasing the visibility and that the updates are for the entire team.
Sometimes it just happens that someone would give a one line update which just doesn’t make sense. In such a situation, I would randomly pick another person from the team and ask if he understood it. If that person can't explain, then the update was not good enough (Or maybe he just wasn't paying attention :-)). The team needs to be trained to provide balanced updates i.e. don’t give too many unnecessary details or give too little detail that others can’t make sense out of.
In short, running daily scrum takes a lot of discipline on part of the Scrum Master. However, once scrum best practices are adopted and followed by the team for a few iterations, the daily stand up becomes second nature for the team and everything runs like a well oiled machine.