Who is a Scrum Master? The role of a Scrum Master is to ensure that a Scrum team lives by the values and practices of the Scrum Methodology. The ScrumMaster is also often considered as a coach for the team, guiding and helping the team to do the best work they possibly can. The Scrum Master can also be thought of as a facilitator for the team and acts as a bridge between the team and the various stakeholders whose interests are involved with the team performance and output.
The role of a ScrumMaster is to help the team perform at their highest level. They are involved in removing impediments which can hamper the progress of the team and facilitate meetings with the different stakeholders involved so that the interests of the project is always protected and given the highest priority. Usually the role of a Scrum Master is given to a former project manager or team leader but basically it can be done by anyone in the team.
One major objective of the Scrum Master would also be protecting the team i.e. from a very aggressive product owner or internally with in the team when the team members give a very aggressive deadline which they may not be able to match. Also the Scrum Master has to prevent his team members from becoming complacent.
One important difference to understand between Scrum and other project management methodologies is that the Scrum Master is not a project manager. He is more of a project facilitator who facilitates between the various stakeholders who have vested interests in the outcome of the project.
The role of a Scrum Master can be compared to that of a personal trainer, where the responsibility of the trainer is to motivate you to do various exercises and help you achieve your goals. He cannot force you to do things that you don’t want to do. Similarly, a good Scrum Master can provide advice and support to the team members in attaining their goals but cannot punish them if they don’t do it.