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I am a ScrumMaster for a development team. We have an impediment which will be resolved by an engineer on a different team.

Does anyone have any tips or techniques for speeding this along. Should I just ask this engineer how things are going? They know we are waiting on them, so should I keep reminding them they are holding us up. Should I talk to their line manager.

Basically I want to know how pushy I should be as a Scrum Master in order to get the impediment removed

  • I think it varies widely depending on your current org culture and approach to servant leadership, and clarity of expectations when it comes to self-organization. For example, solutions could range from continuing to wait/let the teams fail so that they can learn, all the way to directly making a fuss in each team's standup. Can you provide more info around the culture aspects? Maybe some other examples of resolved blockers or self-organizing behavior (or lack of it)? – Jeff Lindsey Aug 17 '15 at 13:24
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So following good agile practices, I would recommend that you ask the Product Owner for the other team where your item is on their backlog. Request an estimate for when they think it will be committed to a sprint.

If your dependent on a waterfall team then I would make the request to the project manager and functional manager for that team.

In either instance you need to clearly communicate when you need the functionality by. Let the team know if you don't have functionality by X date, your program would go to blocker state (Red on a standard stoplight dashboard). Then I recommend you also set up additional milestones for when your program will go to yellow based on risk the dependency won't be delivered.

One last related note. I generally don't recommend a scrum team start work on any story that has a dependency. If the dependency doesn't get filled, then that's wasted development work. It also impacts the teams ability to be "done" with that user story.

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