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Team Self-Confidence part 2
Written by Daniel Pedemonte   
Tuesday, 05 February 2013 16:25

Scrum’s Key factor to achieve outstanding and constant results 

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In the first part of this article, we talked about self-confidence as a fundamental part of Scrum work, particularly for Development Team Members, and what was the first of the three ways to create it voluntarily: Changing your physiology. 

Today we’ll cover the remaining two ways: Focus and Beliefs.

2. Control your mental focus

We’d determined that whatever you feel, you feel it through your physical body, but weather you feel this certain emotion and no other is determined by what you are focusing on.

If you are focusing constantly on how things might not work out –like you’re not going to make it to the Sprint deadline, you’ll have to explain your lack of results directly to the Product Owner, and other Agile-nightmarish scenarios; of course you won’t have confidence.

We experience whatever we focus on, and if you focus on how things won’t work, you are going to feel the pain you associate to that experience, you are going to create an enormous amount of doubt and then you’ll become a self-fulfilling prophecy and you won’t get the results you want.

One way to control your focus is to control your inner talk, the things you say and ask to yourself. Usually, people who have a lot of doubts ask internally the questions that created them; they say things like “could I really deliver what I committed to for this sprint?”, or “I wander if this will get screwed up too…”  Well, you cannot seriously expect to get any good results that way, right? Even more, you will probably get fired for destroying the Team’s moral!

Seriously, if you expect those kinds of things to happen, they will.

What if, on the other hand, your focus is on questions like “How am I going to get this task done?” or even better: “what’s the best way I can get this task done, and enjoy the process?” Surely, questions like that are going to produce better results to present to your Product Owner once the Sprint is over, don’t you agree?

If you ask yourself questions like that, your mind is going to be expecting that task to get done, so you will start feeling and acting confident.

3. Change your beliefs

If you are one of those people that go through life believing that the only way they can ever feel confident is if they have already accomplished something –in other words people that say “how can I be confident if I’ve never done it before?” If this is the case, you are in big trouble, and you are doing nothing but limiting yourself. This is where beliefs take control of the situation, for better or for worse.

You see, I come from a belief system that says “If I can even imagine it, I know I can achieve it”, and also: “If I’m committed, there is always a way”. That allows me to be confident no matter what (and you can borrow those beliefs if you want; I know they will come out handy for you).

No matter how tough or demanding your Product Owner might be, no matter how far you seem to be from getting your part of the Sprint Backlog; if you don’t know how to make it work, somebody else does, and you can get their help. Coming from that place will allow you to be confident all the time.

Remember: everything you are doing now as a part of your Development Team, you once weren’t good at. Everything you are proficient now, there was a time when you were doing it for the very first time, so… why wait to get confident? Why don’t you just move ahead as if you already were that proficient from the very beginning? I guarantee you will get the best results even faster, because you are going to make the same steps with confidence.

And what if you make mistakes along the way? You will learn something out of that experience and that will make you even more confident, because that learning will make you better in the future!

Make your own rules; set the game up to win and you will get confident.



Dan C. Pedemonte

Agile Coach, Human Potential Strategist
ISU Corp .