The path to Scrum Mastery


On the way to Scrum Mastery

Creating a space for Scrum Masters to learn and grow: When we started the agile transformation at Swisscom in 2016, we did not focus on Scrum Masters. Only a few of our more than 100 certified Scrum Masters had experience. As a result, there were hardly any role models and expertise was limited to the content of certification training courses. As a result, the role of the Scrum Master was greatly misunderstood and greatly undervalued, so Scrum Masters struggled to do their job effectively. There was a lack of clear understanding of the role, skills and competences and even career opportunities. All in all, the role of Scrum Master was rather unattractive.

In our internal Agile coaching team, we asked ourselves: What can we do to establish an effective and impactful Scrum Master role that sets a new standard for the organisation?

Inspired by a blog post(opens in new tab) by Barry Overeem and Christiaan Verwijs, we launched our Scrum Master Journey: A Group of Inspired Scrum Masters has developed its own 6-month training programme to learn from each other and work together.

Let's embark on the journey to Scrum Mastery together, our Swisscom journey to establish an effective and impactful Scrum Master role that sets a new standard within our organisation! In this blog post, I'll walk you through the process of how we crafted a meaningful invitation, discovered a common purpose, created learnings and used closure to start fresh and redefine the Scrum Master role at Swisscom.

It all starts with a strong invitation

To make this experiment a success, we asked ourselves the question: "How can we find motivated Scrum Masters who will make the experiment a success? As it turned out, the key was an urgent invitation in the form of a blog post aimed at Swisscom's Scrum Masters. In the blog post, we laid out our plan to create a space for Scrum Masters to learn and grow together. We also invited them to submit a creative application of some kind. As a result, we received 12 applications. Each application was compelling in its own way, so we decided that everyone who took the time to apply for this learning path should be part of our first Scrum Master Journey class.

Uncovering a common goal

There we were, 12 Scrum Masters, setting off on our journey. The first workshop was crucial: we wanted to set the momentum for the entire journey. So we used the time to create a common understanding of what we wanted to achieve together and put together a backlog of all the topics we felt were necessary to achieve our goal. We included the following topics in this backlog:

  • The art of listening and asking questions
  • Retrospective: setting up sustainable feedback loops that have an impact on the team
  • Flow and Kanban: Understanding that focus and continuous flow are the basis for effective value creation
  • Facilitation: the ability to create a space for the team to solve its own problems

At the end of the kickoff, we agreed on the topic of the first Scrum Master Journey meeting and were excited to start learning.

Creating experiences and effects

The six monthly workshops were all designed to gain personal experience, build a peer network and make a difference in the Scrum Master teams. Therefore, the one-day meetings followed the same structure: a topic chosen by the participants served as a common thread throughout the day, experiments opened up new perspectives and homework led to concrete actions back into the organisation. We also created a far-reaching learning network within and outside Swisscom.

It's time to harvest

What was the result of the Scrum Master Journey? It has exceeded our greatest hopes: Over the past two years, Journey graduates have expanded their role awareness, developed new key competences and skills, and become community ambassadors. We have shifted the understanding of the role from a meeting organiser to a facilitator, coach and servant leader and made the role an interesting career choice with many opportunities. Outside of Swisscom, the participants have built an extensive Scrum Master network with other companies and inspired the launch of further Scrum Master Journeys. The Scrum Master Journey is currently in its fourth edition. After about six months, each class organises itself and finds Scrum Masters who want to take on the role of facilitator to offer another Journey for another class.


Essentially, the "Swisscom Scrum Master Journey" success story consists of four elements:

  • a strong call to find the right people,
  • the discovery of a common goal to create something meaningful,Erfahrungen zu sammeln und Lernnetzwerke aufzubauen, und
  • the handover to the next generation of brokers.

If you are curious and want to start your own Scrum Master Learning Journey, feel free to get in touch with me!

Christian Hofstetter

Christian Hofstetter

Release Train Engineer

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