The role of the scrum master possesses some major responsibilities such as team empowerment, Scrum coach, and the process enforcer. So, once we need to choose a nominee to be the scrum master, we need to search some basic characteristics such as creative mind, Leadership, people person and more. But wait a moment, what about authority? How can it be that the person whom responsible for so many aspects of the project does not have to be authoritative?
Well, back in the old days the authority was one of the job requirements, but the reality of the scrum master day to day work taught us that this characteristic is not needed as we thought before (although it can be helpful in some occasions). The main reason for that lies in the spirit of the scrum that assumes that each person has a natural creativity, the ambition to succeed and the power to act. We need to remember that the scrum framework embraces these attributes by motivating its members to act without pushing them with authority (like we saw in traditional models), here are just a few examples that can explain why the scrum master can lead without a real authority:
- Scrum motivates people by allowing them to share their thoughts while creating a constructive ground that avoids criticism (We can criticize ideas, but not people).
- The team is responsible to decide the amount of work that can be done per sprint (There is no other authority that can decide for them).
- Scrum provides a solid ground for any person to do is job without using micromanagement that affects people motivation.
- The scrum framework uses few specific ceremonies that allow the team to work together to increase the efficiency of their work and also to present the work they did in the last iteration.
- In scrum, team members take an active part has decision makers that allow them to get a real understanding about the big picture that increases the natural motivations that makes them more committed to accomplishing their goals (There is no need to use any authority).
- The Scrum framework helps the scrum team to increase their visibility for both internal (Other teams, Senior Management Etc.) and external resources (Customers).
- Scrum embraces team collaboration that increases the coordination among its team members.
- In scrum, we use short development iterations that help the team to remain focused on a few specific tasks.
- Scrum motivates its employees because it’s allowing them an equal chance to affect the process.
Source: ministry of testing
Scrum Master – A Leader without an Authority | Supreme Agile