Top 7 Scrum Master Interview Questions

What is one interview question to ask a candidate applying for a Scrum Master position? To help applicants and other organizations, we asked HR specialists, recruiting professionals, and business leaders this question for their insights.

From “Do you have coaching experience?” to “How would you build relationships with your team?” these are the Scrum Master interview questions you can ask, or be asked as an applying candidate.

Read more: Scrum Master Certification Guide: Requirements & Cost

Top 7 Scrum Master Interview Questions

What Is a Scrum Retrospective and Why Is It Important?

Scrum retrospectives are meant to analyze the work completed during a sprint, normally conducted after a sprint review, and before the next sprint proceeds.

It’s meant to assess any mistakes or challenges that may have come up as it relates to any tools, processes, or people; identify improvements that can and should be made for the next sprint; and create a tangible plan to implement those improvements.

Susanne Tedrick, Microsoft

What Is Scrum-ban?

Scrum-ban is a hybrid approach that combines Scrum and Kanban. It cleverly combines Scrum’s structure with Kanban’s flexibility and visualization. Scrum-ban can be used to satisfy the demands of the team, reduce work batching, and implement a pull-based approach.

Ryan Nouis, TruPath

Do You Have Coaching Experience?

Scrum teams generally have three main roles: product owner, team members, and finally the Scrum Master. The Scrum Master role is pivotal to the success of any Scrum team.

As part of a collaborative team, the Scrum Master is responsible for coaching team members and facilitating meetings to ensure that the sprint stays on track. Coaching is particularly essential to ensure that relevant and timely feedback is constantly incorporated for improvements and the overall high performance of the team.

Debra Hildebrand, Hildebrand Solutions, LLC

How Do You Run a Daily Scrum Meeting?

The daily Scrum meeting, sometimes known as the standup meeting, is the cornerstone of Scrum. They are held every day and are led by the Scrum Master, who will ask the following questions:

  • “What did you do yesterday?”
  • “What did you do the day before?”
  • “What are we planning to do today? What is it that is stopping us from doing so?”

This is not a status update for stakeholders, but rather a technique to bring the team’s attention to the task at hand.

Phillip Lew, C9 Staff

How Would You Approach a Potential Project Delay?

This question allows the candidate to come to terms with the reality of IT project management and the potential difficulties that are its inherent element. The conversation can be further steered into a discussion of what justifies delays, and when they may actually benefit the business.

If the candidate manages to go beyond the statements of focusing on delay prevention and controlling the progress, it may indicate they are open-minded and keen to embrace their role holistically. That is also a crucial predictor of success in those roles subjected to constantly changing environments, which may produce unavoidable delays and shifts in the development paradigm.

Michael Sena, SENACEA

What Is Your Daily Streamlining?

A great interview question to ask a Scrum Master candidate is to ask them what their daily streamline of tasks is. Asking them how they manage their tasks and delegate them to teams is vital in knowing what type of manager/Scrum Master they will most likely be. Plus, it gives insight into their knowledge of agile and Scrum.

Michael Jankie, Natural Patch

What Is the Difference Between the Product Backlog vs Sprint Backlog?

The Product Backlog contains all things the product must do, as collected by the Product Owner from the customer. The Sprint Backlog is the list of items from the Product Backlog to be completed during the Sprint.

Julie Rysenga, 3LS Consulting

Read next: Best Agile Project Management Tools for 2021

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