I recently had the honor of meeting and learning from Jeff Sutherland, the co-creator of Scrum. He was teaching a Certified ScrumMaster (CSM) course in Palo Alto here in Silicon Valley. Granted, I’ve had my CSM for many years, but it was an excellent opportunity to learn from one of the titans in the Scrum space so I wasn’t passing up this opportunity.
His class made me realize something. Sitting in a lecture and listening is easy, but learning? Learning is hard, and you’re likely not as good at it as you might thing. How many of us have attended a two-day seminar, returned to work, and then did nothing differently? By my definition, you’ve learned nothing:
Learning – Knowledge or experiences that eventually lead to a change in behavior.
I adopted this definition from my MBA professor Bret Simmons, and while today’s topic isn’t about agile, it’s just as important. As I wrote about previously, scrum masters are dot connectors. Each dot is a lesson or experience, and each connection is how we apply that learning to benefit our organizations. Further, I fervently believe that a scrum master who’s not learning and evolving is no longer an asset to his or her team. So here are my tips to help become a better learner: