February 7, 2013 Leave a comment
October 25, 2012 Leave a comment
What happens when the team gets all the training about Scrum, begins to kickoff the process but they don’t have a Scrum Master?
There are arguments (some legitimate and some not) to justify why Scrum will work without a Scrum Master. First, let me say that a Scrum Master is a role not a title so there really shouldn’t be any restrictions on who can fulfill the role. Second, someone should take on the role and really dedicate time and energy to give the team the support they deserve. Check out Mike Cohn’s blog about Rotating the Scrum Master Role.
So what work does a Scrum Master do that now needs to be covered by someone else or the team as needed? There have been a number of response to this question all over the internet and books so you’ve all probably heard that standard answers of remove impediments, champion the process, shields the team from outside interferences, etc. but I’d like to take it a step forward or maybe sideways.
Scrum Masters are champions for the team, their decisions, their delivery and even their failures. They are constantly looking at how the team operates from both an internal and external lens; one that the team members are very rarely able to use because they are in the thick of things and may not have the objective eye. When a Scrum Master is able to identify things that are impeding the team and help them discover it rather than point a finger, jump up and down and demand they fix it, a bond is developed between the team members that gives them the confidence and trust that someone is looking out for them and is there to help them achieve their next level of expertise.
Eventually, a Scrum Master should find that the team needs their guidance less and less over time. There are a few exceptions to that. Teams that are dispersed teams that gain new team members, teams that experience growth and then split (scaling scrum) will need more time and attention from their Scrum Master during these times. They may have been experts at their process and become self managing but anytime the dynamic changes, there will be more to talk about, more to decide on and generally shakes the team for a time.
Another thing to note is that Scrum Masters are not Project Managers or even Tech Managers in their primary role. There is a tendency to do this and it’s a dangerous thing because it can taint decisions and imply a level of power and control that should be absent from a Scrum Master. Members of a scrum team should continue to rely on their managers and peers to improve their level of skill and professional growth whereas a Scrum Master may notice and relay recommendations about team members to their manager as a way of keeping the health of the team and growth of the team moving in a positive direction.
Hope this helps some of you!
August 16, 2012 Leave a comment
For years, I’ve believed that I was Irish; mostly Irish, at least, with a little Scotch and English I was sure. But after using a DNA kit from a Groupon, I found out I’m actually Belgian, among many other European flavors. So despite this scientific evidence, my trip to Ireland is still on and I’m very much looking forward to meeting a few dashingly Irish men.
So after this very posh trip, I’ll have to check out the Belgian vacations for 2013!
1 ½ cups diced watermelon
1 ½ cups diced cantaloupe
1 ½ cups diced honeydew melon
2 cups ice
10 mint leaves
Juice from ¼ lime
2 bottles spumonte or other sparkling wine
Pour all of the diced melons in a large glass pitcher. Top with ice.
Gently muddle mint leaves with the lemon juice. Add to pitcher.
Pour wine last into the glass and stir with a wooden spoon.
1 box brownie mix, 8×8 inch size
24 Oreo Cookies
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a 12 muffin cup baker with paper liners.
Prepare brownie mix according to package directions. For each cupcake cup spread 1 teaspoon of peanut butter over 2 Oreo cookies and stack them on top of each other. Place oreo stacks into the cupcake lined muffin cups. Spoon 2 tablespoons of brownie batter over each stacked oreos and let it run down the sides of the cookies. If you have left over brownie batter, bake separately in a separate baker or muffin tin. Bake cookies and brownies for 18 to 20 minutes, until brownies are cooked through. Let cool completely then serve.
Makes 12 servings
1 pound asparagus, trimmed $
2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 cups halved grape tomatoes $
1/2 teaspoon minced fresh garlic
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar $
1/4 teaspoon salt $
3 tablespoons crumbled goat cheese
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1. Cook asparagus in boiling water 2 minutes or until crisp-tender. Drain.
2. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add tomatoes and garlic; cook 5 minutes. Stir in vinegar; cook 3 minutes. Stir in salt. Arrange asparagus on a platter; top with tomato mixture. Sprinkle with cheese and pepper.
Raisin and Pine Nut variation: Omit tomatoes, garlic, vinegar, and goat cheese.
Cook 1/3 cup sliced red onion and 2 tablespoons pine nuts in oil for 4 minutes.
Add 2 1/2 tablespoons orange juice, 3 tablespoons raisins, and 2 teaspoons honey; cook 2 minutes. Stir in 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon orange rind. Spoon over asparagus; sprinkle with pepper. Yield: 4 servings.
Calories 111; Fat 5.3g (sat 0.6g); Sodium 151mg
Sesame-Ginger Glazed variation: Omit oil, tomatoes, vinegar, salt, cheese, and pepper. Microwave 1 tablespoon lower-sodium soy sauce, 1 teaspoon honey, 1 teaspoon lime juice, 1 teaspoon minced peeled fresh ginger, and garlic on HIGH for 2 minutes. Drizzle over asparagus; sprinkle with 2 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds. Serve with lime wedges. Yield: 4 servings.
Calories 43; Fat 0.8g (sat 0.1g); Sodium 134mg
Lemon-Tarragon variation: Omit tomatoes, vinegar, and cheese; decrease pepper to 1/4 teaspoon. Combine 1/8 teaspoon lemon rind, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 2 teaspoons chopped tarragon, garlic, 1/2 teaspoon minced shallot, 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard, salt, pepper, and oil. Drizzle tarragon mixture over asparagus; toss gently to coat. Yield: 4 servings.
Makes 7-8 large patties
2 cans cannellini white beans, drained
1 large sweet potato, baked/peeled/mashed (about 2 cups)
2 Tbsp tahini
2 tsp maple or agave syrup
1 tsp lemon pepper seasoning OR Cajun seasoning (or another fave spice!)
1/4 cup wheat flour
optional: additional seasoning (whatever you have on hand – I used a few dashes cayenne, black pepper and a scoop of nutritional yeast)
salt to taste if needed
plentiful Panko crumbs
safflower oil for pan
Burgers: avocado, Dijon mustard, grain buns, romaine, onion, olive oil, pepper
1. Bake sweet potato. Peel, place in large mixing bowl.
2. Add drained beans to mixing bowl. Mash beans and potato together.
3. Mash in seasoning, flour and any additional seasoning. Your mixture will be quite soft and moist. But you should be able to form a patty. Add more flour or a scoop of breadcrumbs – or dry rice to thicken the mixture if needed.
4. Heat 1 Tbsp safflower oil in a pan over high heat.
5. Form a patty from mixture and coat in Panko crumbs. Thick coating. Then drop the patty in the pan. Repeat until the pan is filled. Cook until browned on both sides. You could also bake. If baking, use less Panko.
6. Transfer cooked patties to paper towel. Cool for a few minutes.
7. Serve on toasted bun with lotsa toppings.
Note: yes this patty does fall kind of apart as you eat it. But that is OK because it tastes yummy.
Recipe type: Side Dish
Author: Savory Sweet Life
A simple but flavorful recipe for Tomato Basil Mozzarella Salad.
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
8 ounces fresh “mini” mozzerella pearls
4 tablespoons olive oil
18 basil leaves, chopped
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
Add the cherry tomatoes and mozzerella cheese to a medium bowl. Drizzle the olive oil over the tomatoes and mozzerella. Add the basil, salt, and pepper, and gently toss all the ingredients.