Wednesday, February 06, 2013

You Already Chose Failure (or Success)

Ever wonder if it's going to work? Is this role right for you? Can you successfully lead this team? Will the project be a success?

Although we may have the skills and experience to be successful, much more is determined by the intangibles - passion and drive, collaboration skills and empathy, work ethic, vision and values.

We all have roles, and those roles are our decision filters on how we behave, and therefore our success. We are acting out of those roles whether we realize it our not, and often it's not the roles we want to be in, but default or roles not appropriate for the situation.

I might know a lot about parenting, but if my primary role when I come home is (still) business, then my actions are based on that, and I fail. I'll be trying to get one more email done. I'll be thinking about upcoming meetings and not listening to my family. I won't be present emotionally, even if there physically. And I certainly won't be leading my family to a vision of what we can be, something they get excited about and get behind.

The roles of the ScrumMaster include Servant Leader, Impediment Remover, Coach, Educator and Evangelist, Organizational Change Agent, Chief Mechanic and Shepherd an Guardian of the Process.
Our roles act as a decision filter. When you're at work, try consciously wearing one of these hats. That way, we take initiative in stopping our default responses or reactions and start acting from who we want to be.

For example, if I'm late to work, my default role of employee or reports-to-someone pulls me towards trying to sneak in unnoticed. Now, my teammates or those I lead will notice this. I've not only missed a coaching or learning opportunity with them, but I've actually modeled just the behavior that I don't want  them to have.

Instead, if I am late to work, but I'm wearing the role of servant leader, I'm thinking of my team first. I transparently check in with them, letting them know that since I was late, I might have missed something they needed (or worse, the daily stand-up). I might model vulnerability about how I'm wrestling with my own inspect-and-adapt cycle on how to solve this on-time problem.

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