17 March 2022

Scrum master as a leader and coach: Meet Audrey

A few years ago, Audrey Noble began as a Conversation Copywriter on the Proximus Assistant project, building an effective, intuitive chatbot for this well known client. Her analysis, her reflections and the quality of her writing combined with her incredible understanding of the world and the people around her led her to become Scrum Master on this project--a project which has never stopped growing.

Scrum Master: more than a team leader, really a coach

Scrum Master is a term that has developed a lot in the last few years. It is generally linked to so-called Agile workflows, smaller teams, with a shorter work, organization and decision-making circuit. The Scrum Master, in this environment, is the Master of Ceremonies, the conductor of the orchestra, the one who has an overview of the whole project. Simply the leader? Well, it's not quite -that simple and strict. We could broaden the spectrum of this position to Project Manager-slash-Coach. A coach who will help each member of the team to offer the best of himself in the best circumstances.

And Audrey's definition of her job is very much in line with this spirit: "I take care of a team of editors, and I really feel at the service of this team. I make sure that everyone can move forward serenely, that they can deliver quality content while feeling comfortable and supported.

In short, to best manage a tech project, largely related to automatization, an incredible USP of Audrey is simply being herself. In an age where technology is advancing at breakneck speed, it is Audrey's humanity and her quality of contact that make her so effective and relevant.

Becoming a great Scrum Master

Talk to Audrey for a few moments and you'll really feel the soul of a benevolent leader. Paired with a sense of confidence, you can imagine how these innate qualities facilitate smooth communication and greatly benefit in a team environment. Keep talking to her and you will understand that it is the vagaries of life, and the way Audrey has taken them in stride, that make her so unique in her position.

After her studies in languages and literature, Audrey went on the road, working as a translator, teacher, copywriter in an advertising agency until hitting a turning point in 2018. A personal event turned everything upside down and lead her to reposition herself. Audrey tells us that she has always loved introspection, but she had never done so much of it; by asking herself the question that we have all asked ourselves at least once in our lives, the trigger came. Audrey asks herself "what do I want to do now?", and probably all the experiences of a lifetime lead her to reformulate the question in a way that will condition the years to come. Suddenly it is no longer "What do I want to do?” but "What do I want to be?” A simple change of verb for a change of vision.

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Let it BE

This notion of being truly places the human being at the center of reflection, and it is a quality that makes Audrey extremely effective in her position as Scrum Master for Proximus. She realizes her own potential, and pushes others to realize themselves. But, she says with a smile, "To be clear, I don't expect others to be the same as me. I try to instill an approach of excellence in the work, by being in tune with oneself."

A way of thinking and acting that allows Audrey and her team to flourish. In her work, we see a clear example of how each decision and each experience in our lives shapes our professional qualities. According to Audrey, in order to understand others, it is imperative to understand ourselves. By seeing each experience, positive or negative, on the same level, as a plus that makes us progress, there are only pluses in the equation.

As you can see, if you want to become a Scrum Master (or hire one), the point is to never neglect the human aspect, and the quality of human interactions. Behind a great conversation robot, there are always human thoughts and interactions.

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