Scrum and Leadership Styles

January 22, 2014
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Leadership styles vary depending on the organization, the situation, and even the specific individuals and objectives of the Scrum project. The leadership style will determine the work culture of the team and also the behaviour of the Scrum Team members. Some common leadership styles are as follows:

Autocratic: Autocratic leaders do not delegate the powers to others and decision making powers are rested with the leader. They do not take the suggestions from others and compel others to follow their decision or orders. In this style of leadership, employees do not have any freedom to put forth their views.

Democratic: This leadership style is completely opposite of the autocratic style. Here, the leader is the representative of employees and is selected with the consent of all the team members. He takes suggestions, inputs and discuss with the team members before he takes the decision. However, the power remains with the leader and responsibility is delige=ated to the team members.

Laissez Faire: The leader in this style of leadership is hardly interested in supervising the scrum team’s activity and their performance. The team members are left at large to perform and achieve the goals. In such style of leadership, the impediments faced by the team are not removed and this may lead to failure of the projects.

Servant Leadership—Servant leaders employ listening, empathy, commitment, and insight while sharing power and authority with team members. Servant leaders are stewards who achieve results by focusing on the needs of the team. This style is the embodiment of the Scrum Master role.

Delegating: These leaders delegate the authority and responsibility to the team members. Team members can make the decisions and take the responsibility of their activities. This is done, when the leader feels that the members are competent enough to the decisions. Leader is invited to involve in the decision making if it is demanded by the situation.

Directing: Directing leaders in scrum team provide instructions to team members on each and every task need to be performed. This some time may reduce the confidence of the team members and they always expect the leader to guide them.

Assertive: Assertive leaders confront issues and display confidence to establish authority with respect.

The Servant Leadership style is the one that should be adopted in the Scrum Teams. This leadership provides enough powers to the Scrum team members to take decisions and also the team is held responsible for the success of scrum projects. This brings ownership to the team members are not restricted it to the leader.

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