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Dysfunction Mapping – A tool for effective coaching across teams and organizations

starting a role as a Scrummaster / Agile Coach with a new team can sometimes be a bit overwhelming. You see so many „Antipatterns“ that it is hard to find a starting point. The Dysfunction Mapping brings more structure into this chaos. This is a place where you can store and organize all your findings from your first week of observation. YES, please, don’t start to change anything in your first month, observe! I know it is hard, and some managers might put pressure on some topics they might want you to solve immediately. Please make clear that we, as Coaches / Scrummasters, are not „Fixers“ (I love this word; I have read it in the fantastic book: „Extraordinarily Badass Agile Coaching“. When you talk to the team and pretend you want to „fix“ something, they feel like they have done something wrong.

–>Better: Hei, I observed this ….  and I have a hypothesis that this could cause this…. (never reaching the sprint goal, etc.) what about trying out this….  to solve it?

Michael Loyd – Dysfunction Mapping Slides

At the latest Hands On Agile meetup, I learned a lot about how to organize my work as an Agile Coach. I will add the video once it’s online. What stood out for me in this talk was, that I not only learned how to organize all the findings but also how to build a hypothesis and how to measure my success, build my backlog and how to prepare the talk with the manager(s) where we can talk about priorities.

Trying to solve ONE THING AT A TIME

It becomes the top tool for creating transparency. You bring detailed information so that everyone can get a deep understanding of the cause. Talking about flight levels might be fine, but how to make sure that we all talk about the same thing? I find it super helpful when we talk about „real“ things. So we start with what we see: Negative Outcomes like a „dependency“ –> Integration issues between teams. This is the Symptom. Now, let’s find out about the Dysfunction  of this issue. It could be that the team has no test strategy. Next, we will ask for the Purpose of this rule/practice. So we can find a solution which we will try out. Last but not least, we need to find out if this Solution works, we need to find out how we can Measure these.


Dysfunction Mapping Header


Michael also has a complete Dysfunction Mapping Workshop Template out there on the Miroverse: LINK


Read more about it here on Michael Loyds Medium:

Dysfunction Mapping – A tool for effective agile coaching

Dysfunction Mapping – Michael Loyd

The video of Michael’s talk for the Hands On Agile community is available now:


Eine Antwort zu „Dysfunction Mapping – A tool for effective coaching across teams and organizations“

  1. […] In this article, Johanna Rothmann goes into detail about where and how flow metrics can be used reasonably. At the team level and also for the Dysfunction Mapping which is a great tool to feed the discussion outside team and with management. This is one of my tools in my imaginary toolbox I use with the Michaels‘ Dysfunction Mapping. […]

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