Jul 30

Mind the gap

A while ago I was asked by people at a company I was working for to come up with a clear overview of the responsibilities of the various scrum roles. Who does what and where does their involvement start and/or end? My first answer was that everybody is supposed to be involved and should work together and that everybody has things to ad and do to a scrum project to make it work. But even after explaining the various roles, this wasn’t clear enough. They wanted something that made it more clear. A map of some kind.  So I made an attempt to define the roles of the Productowner, Scrummaster, stakeholders and the team in a mind map . I realize that for every project and company this may differ and you can argue about things like that the scrumaster does not own the burndownchart but the team does.

I made a first attempt to define the various responsibilities and ownerships. You can question me if this is the right thing to do. Setting everything in stone is not good for any project, especially in Agile projects. So please give me your feedback. How do you see things. At least this might start a good dialogue about the roles. And hopefully give some people a little bit more insight in the various role aspects within scrum.

There are four main categories in these mind maps.
Needs: what does the specific role need in order to be able to deliver
Owns: of what does the specific role have ownership
Mandate: on what does the specific role have mandate
Communicates: through which channels does the specific role communicate

The lines are also the flows, for example, a stakeholders has to communicate by means of the product owner and not direct to the team, although this does not mean that direct communication is not allowed but to make things clear, and it would be best to do so.

As I mentioned, this is how it worked for the specific company I was working for. Details might differ but the general idea is that every role has responsibilities and ownership. Some overlap and some might collide. At least I hope it will give you something to think about.

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