Leaving Scrum to the Scrum Masters for now
Today I removed the prefix “Agile” from several of the Business Analyst roles on my resume, explicitly ignoring the advice of the CV writer. A year ago when I landed a full-time Scrum Master role, I was very excited and felt my software development background using C# .Net HTML ASP SQL with XP / Agile / Scrum would be a great asset to me and my new team.
Unfortunately, I quickly found out that the modern Scrum Master role often entails setting up room bookings, taking meeting notes, educating the “Product Owner” how to perform their role, chasing people to attend Scrum ceremonies, updating Gantt charts and management RAID logs.
The “Agile” keyword has worked well to solicit many recruiter calls for other potential agile roles. Still, I’ve found myself pulled away from my core professional expertise and wandering around in the long agile grass too often recently. So today, I’m going back to what I have always done well; analysing, designing, building and testing new technology solutions to satisfy a business need, typically spanning across people/process/technology domains. This is what I love doing and, for the most part, has nothing to do with formal Scrum or other Agile frameworks and processes.
I guess I’m simply trying to attract better quality engagements where I can bring about meaningful change through analysis and design rather than being constrained by arbitrary frameworks. Be that Scrum, Agile, Waterfall or something else. Interestingly, I asked around various Scrum and Agile communities and many Scrum Masters and Agile Coaches said they didn’t feel empowered to bring about meaningful change (nb. A disempowerment checklist by Mark Dalgarno is a good read on this topic).
I’m definitely still a huge fan of “Agile” and will continue to be agile in my thinking and ways of working, even willing to embed it once again when deemed beneficial for the team. But for the time being, I’m going to sit on the sidelines and watch digital transformations shake out a bit.
I’ll leave Scrum to the Scrum Masters for now.
Frank Ray & Associates is a software engineering consultancy that builds high quality software for businesses.