Whether you use Scrum or Kanban as a delivery method, as a ScrumMaster you must be able to help the team or organisation understand and use the methods or frameworks.
This involves an element of teaching, coaching and mentoring. I have already looked at one way I have been establishing a coaching stance at my clients in my ‘Coaching Dojo’ blog earlier this week. Now I want to share with you something that Carlo Beschi and I put together for a conference and now subsequently using to help people become better trainers within the same organisation.
I regularly train non certified Scrum Classes and I am also an accredited Kanban trainer for the LKU. In fact, I am also a Train the Trainer for the LKU (ooooooo I hear you say! )
This means I spend lots of time thinking about how to convey messages in a simple and fun way, that everyone gets and can practically take back to their work places and start using.
I am one of the first people to turn off with my three second attention span if you just talk at me. Equally if you want me making random shapes with my body, then you are going to lose me too. For me it’s about getting the right balance of the two and really thinking about who your target audience is and what you want to get across.
I have seen many great trainers over my years and love the Sharon Bowman’s ‘Training from the back of the room’. So when Carlo and I put together this offering it was a blend of all of our years experiences and what we have learnt from our own training and research.
Our strategy was to include as many good and bad practices as we could . If the students could recognise them in us, maybe they could recognise them in themselves. To help facilitate this we created Bingo cards and of all the techniques we were planning on using in the session. As soon as they had a row, we encouraged them to shout ‘Bingo’. Not only was it educational, but it meant they kept focused throughout the session and had a little fun along the way. We rewarded winners with chocolate.
The first half of the deck is sharing different thoughts and practices for running great training sessions. You won’t get this sense from the deck, but throughout the class we were using all the different techniques we were talking about so they could see them and experience them in person.
The second half is about handing over the reins to the attendees and getting them to put into practice everything that they had learnt over the course of the session.
We gave them a time box to go away and plan a mini training session and we had 2 decks of cards for the topics, normal ones like story points and user stories and then wild cards which are harder topics such as probabilistic forecasting.
You will see in the slides that there is a lot more content around them than just words on a page. Apologies, but without writing a whole book this is hard to convey.
Carlo and I first run this at the Agile Tour and we got some really great feedback from the attendees. Now I have adapted it further and we are going to use it to facilitate a half day session at my client to train people in preparation for a software craftsmanship course, they are planning on running internally. We hope that they also take many practices into the sessions that they are about to write and plan.
Our slides are in the public domain and you can find them on my slide share here: https://www.slideshare.net/helenmeek/effective-teaching-v20
Maybe have a think about how your communities train each other and whether there is any value from any of the practices that we call out. Don’t forget that the practical element of any training is extremely important, and so that’s why we have included it with the provision of valuable feedback to the students.
I know so many great trainers from my peer group who I admire. I took the opportunity to contact a few of them and ask them for some of their top tips. Keep an eye out for these in the deck and thank you to everyone who contributed them.
I wanted to share these slides with you because I feel it’s important to help grow and harness the expertise in our industry. Together we have so much knowledge and by creating a sharing culture we can truly become awesome and transform the world of work.
Thanks again to everyone who was involved in this and special thanks to Carlo Beschi my co creator.
You never know, we might run it again at conference near you
Email Helen Meek
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