Scrum 201 course + Workshop

This is an intermediate level course for CSMs or CSPOs who want to go to the next level with Scrum.

In fact, it would be excellent for whole teams, who have sufficient experience, to take this course together.  And the managers directly involved would benefit too.

Frankly we are strong advocates of playing Scrum professionally.   We think too many people are playing Scrum at what could be called an amateur level.  With good intentions, but not with enough training and enough discipline and vigor. Being an amateur in certain situations is a good thing, but not in playing Scrum.

Part of the purpose of the course is to help you to earn your CSP certification. This includes SEUs, but more importantly, the learnings you need to become more professional in Scrum.  In addition to the course and other courses, other conditions apply to become a CSP.

We think Scrum offers huge benefits if played professionally with vigor.

What is the basic problem?  What do I need to take Scrum to the next level?

One way of describing the problem is this:

  • Attitudinal: People don’t believe that the benefits are out there, and for a variety of reasons, do not play as vigorously as they should.
  • Practical: People have misunderstood some of the basic steps of Scrum. Or bad habits have seeped in.  This is universally common in any sport. And clearly true in Scrum.
  • Understanding: People either did not learn or have forgotten the underlying purposes of each part of Scrum and each part of the agile mix. In our opinion, this is the key reason for so much Scrum-Butt. (Ex: “We do Scrum, BUT we don’t have a good product owner…”)
  • Combinational: People have not made as good a combination of Scrum and other things to make it work as effectively as possible. (Other things always  must be added to Scrum. Of course, the other things should be agile-friendly.)

So, the goal of the course is to deal with these problems.

And to unleash, to a much higher level, the benefits of Scrum. For each person, for the Team, and for your customers.


There is plenty of content for the course.  In fact, too much.  So, part of the work will be to prioritize what the specific attendees want to learn. Or need to learn, to be more successful.

Content areas will include:

  • The basics of Scrum and how to present them.  One might expect that these were well-known.  But frankly it is remarkable how helpful it is to review the basics.  Of course, this is true in any sport.  For those who understand the basics well, we still find one always needs more practice explaining the basics to others.  It is said that most games in sports are won through a keen appreciation for, and a vigorous execution of, the basics (“basic blocking and tackling”).
  • The underlying principles. Why Scrum works, and all the reasons why each practice is useful.
  • The roundedness of a good ScrumMaster
  • How to build a great Team (read, dedicated, stable)
  • Removing impediments more aggressively
  • Making better business cases
  • Improving the Product Owner
  • Business Value Engineering
  • Better business stakeholders
  • The ready, ready criteria
  • The definition of done
  • Better release planning
  • The agile contract (fixed-price, fixed-scope issues)
  • Patterns of ‘implementer’ evolution (and related issues from the attendees)
  • Improving the engineering practices
  • Advocating for the agile team
  • Advocating for the Agile Transformation
  • Making change happen (large and small)
  • Patterns for the agile transformation
  • What does the broader Agile Transformation look like?
  • Changing organizational culture
  • Scaling
  • Distributed Agile
  • Too many projects at once
  • Interruptions during the Sprint
  • The Team manages the key chickens
  • Other problems or impediments, as identified by the attendees
  • Taking the Scrum meetings to the next level
  • Taking the artifacts to the next level
  • How to manage in Agile
  • Managers and Metrics
  • Minimizing WIP
  • Knowledge workers and motivation
  • Hyper-productivity
  • Everything is not agile yet; what do we do?
  • What is the secret sauce?
  • Review of agile release planning
  • Smaller stories
  • ARP exercise

As you read a list like this, you notice that many topics could be dealt with at length. Some could even be stand-alone courses.  So, part of the effort is to balance the attendees’ needs in all these areas.

Part of the learning approach will include you teaching others.  (It is remarkable how much you learn when you must teach others.)
Part of the learning approach will include exercises. Some will directly include the real work of at least one person in the team for that exercise.


We strongly suggest you include the workshop (the third day).

The workshop would take a team, select a product owner, and do agile release planning for a real 5-7 month project in one day. This takes many of the ideas discussed, and makes them real and concrete in the form on one real project.

The ideal situation is where the real whole team (or 5 members of the team) have come to the course. Alternately, we form a temporary team from the people who come to the course. In either case, it is one product owner’s real project.

Who Should Attend:

This Scrum 201 course + Workshop is for CSMs, CSPOs, managers and others experienced in Scrum who are looking for an intermediate Scrum course. The following people may find it useful: Product Owners, managers, analysts, product/project managers, Business Stakeholders, business analysts, coders, testers, and ScrumMasters.

CSP Candidates: This course will give you 15 SEUs. The workshop will give you 7 additional SEUs.

PMPs: You can receive 15 Professional Development Units (PDUs) for the course. The workshop counts as 7 additional PDUs.

Course Material:

Participants will receive a copy of the slide deck (not books) at the course.  (The slide deck will surely include many more slides than we will cover.) There are updated materials and training exercises in the course which are invaluable.

Additional Information:

The course and the workshop will run from 8:30am-5:30pm each day. A continental breakfast, breaks and lunch will be provided.