How to handle constant feedback from your scrum master in your team that you need to improve, and that you have not still reached that stage?

How can I convey my message to him that this needs to stop, that it is affecting my productivity, and that I continue to worry that you will come around poking at me and being unappreciative.

Or should I simply keep on working since I have confidence in my work, and even work more hard and try to overcome everybody expectations.

migrated from productivity.stackexchange.com May 8 '16 at 21:24

  • 1
    Are they giving you any specifics on what they want you to change and how you might start doing so? If so the proper response is "interesting point, let me think about how to apply that" even if you didn't like hearing it. If not, this is just criticism, not useful feedback. – keshlam May 9 '16 at 1:10
  • In scrum (and agile development largely) constant improvement is part of the process. It would help to know if this feedback is happening as part of a retrospective. Also are the areas of improvement related to work done or process items (you need to write better code vs you are not appropriately sizing stories)? – adeady May 10 '16 at 15:26
  • If this is SCRUM-related, shouldn't this be moved to Project Management instead? OP, I can't tell if this is critical feedback on your performance being subpar or just part of your company's management framework. VTC unclear. – Lilienthal May 11 '16 at 17:54

Scrummaster are not generally line managers. However they are usually senior professionals, and if they consider your work to be substandard you should pay attention to this feedback.

First, consult your manager. Get his feedback on whether the criticism is justified. If your scrummaster is also your line manager, you have this feedback and you need to start addressing the issues. You might also consider talking to other members of the team, to see if they think the criticism is justified.

The first step to dealing with any criticism of your work is to get specifics. Ask your scrummaster to identify (if he hasn't done so) cases where your work was perceived to be bad, find out why it was thought to be bad, and what you might do to fix it. Make sure your line manager is involved in this process. If, after hearing the detailed criticisms you still think it is unjustified, explain why. Again make sure your line manager, who is the person ultimately responsible for monitoring your performance, gets to make the judgement.

If your line manager disagrees with your scrummasters assessment, that should be enough to stop the criticism. If the line manager agrees, you will need to work on improving your performance.

  • @sunila Consider also that if you do ask your co-workers for feedback, they may very well sugarcoat things to avoid confrontation. Your line manager and scrummaster will be more likely to give you an honest answer. – Lumberjack May 10 '16 at 3:37

The ScrumMaster is responsible for coaching you on the process, not on your work. If the ScrumMaster is giving you feedback on the process, you should talk to him/her to improve on that.

If the feedback is about something else. the ScrumMaster is probably giving feedback in a different role. Even then, it should be feedback not criticism. We never reach perfection though so there should always be feedback.

If you view it as criticism,t his is a good opportunity to talk. Maybe the person doesn't intend it that way? Maybe another person's opinion will be helpful?



How to handle constant feedback from your scrum master in your team that you need to improve, and that you have not still reached that stage?

Generally speaking, you have to deal with it. Because SCRUM is about constantly improving and the SCRUM masters job is to tell you how you can improve in the process of SCRUM. So theoretically, everything is as it should be.


Some things you said make me think that maybe SCRUM is not fully understood by all members of your organisation. Although the SCRUM master should be free to point out small things immediately (like "you are late we agreed on 10:30" or "please update the cards on the board at the time we specified"), general feedback should be left for the Retrospective, because you need to focus on your work in the sprint.

Feedback concerning the quality or quantity of your work should never come from your SCRUM master. That should come from your team mates, maybe in the same retrospective. Because your SCRUM master is not responsible for the product's quality, it's the team. The SCRUM master might not even be able to judge it. That's not his or her job.


So the bottom line is, you will need to continually improve. Both concerning processes as well as in the quality of your own work. Both should not come as constant nagging, but just as you are focused on your work in a sprint, feedback should be focused in the retrospective meeting after each sprint.

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