So, what does a Scrum Master do?

Now that you are working from home, you may actually have to explain to the family or your roommate just what it is a Scrum Master does. Here’s how it has gone in my family over the years:


“Dad, what do you do?”

"I’m a Scrum Master."

" A what? "

"A Scrum Master. "

Cue the blank stare on their faces. "Umm… I help developers create products."

"Oh! How?"

"Well, I facilitate and coach them on how to collaborate with each other."

Still nothing, so I feebly try one last time and reluctantly say: "I work with computers."

"Ohhhhh!"

Sound familiar?


I can coach an enterprise through an Agile transformation, and I can teach a room full of students how to be an effective Scrum Master. I’m passionate about it and love it. But when it comes to explaining exactly what I do to my family, I still have trouble answering this simple question. After many years, my wife has recently started to understand what it is I do. My mother still has no clue. My kids use a Kanban board, but they think everybody uses one.


When you step out of the home office for a snack, you are likely to get asked the question, what does a Scrum Master do?


In the hope of you getting that snack quicker, here are a few of the descriptions I tend to hear:


1. I improve the process used to create products.

2. I’m an Agile Program Manager.

3. I direct developers on how to work effectively.

4. I’m a process coach for development teams.

5. I’m a director of business agility.


What other descriptions do you use that can help a fellow Scrum Master describe what they do to their family?

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