Growing Your Magical Creatures - Vera Gehlen-Baum & Beren van Daele

Growing Your Magical Creatures - Vera Gehlen-Baum & Beren van Daele


When we talk about Scrum-teams and their interdisciplinary performance, it seems like many of us, have this team of experts in mind, which are theoretically able to fulfill every role and could do every job in the team. Unicorns, dragons, chimeras, wizards,... we call them.
From our point of view- these team members sound a lot like Nessi or the yeti – they may very well exist - it’s just that we have never seen them.

We often have a good mix in our team - some members are more junior than senior, which struggle with the software, the framework, themselves, additional tools,... others have specialties in one thing and only shallow understanding in others – and that is ok!

Currently we are working in a test automation project that struggles with multiple steep learning curves as we tackle understanding the product under test, building up our skillset and learning to function as a team.
Given our peculiar context we’ve experimented applying Vera’s deep understanding of the theory of learning and putting it in practice in a team consisting of real people, real challenges and real learning needs resulting in an honest and valuable experience report.

We’d like to share some insights on how to train people within the project to make the group more homogenous in terms of knowledge sharing and teaching each other. Therefore we ( in the role of the Product Owner and ScrumMaster) include learning and especially learning goals into the backlog and apply the SCRUM methods to them..

In our talk we will show how we included learning goals in our backlog and the effects it had on the team. We will discuss how to find the time to learn in projects and to do a proper debriefing on learning goals.


We like to show how you can adapt roles to serve your team even more and how you can include learning in your team process