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  • kai peter stabell

The Scrum Master’s Role in Agile Conflict Resolution

Updated: Nov 30, 2022

As an Agile Coach or Scrum Master, you know the importance of emotional intelligence and the need to effectively manage conflicts within a team. You also know that conflict isn’t something to be avoided – it can actually be a positive force for change if managed properly. In this blog post, we’ll discuss some of the techniques a Scrum Master can use to address these situations and focus on how to conduct conflict analyses from different perspectives.



The first step in managing conflict is to understand the context of the situation. This includes understanding what type of conflict is taking place (is it an interpersonal conflict? A task-based conflict?), as well as identifying any potential underlying causes that could be contributing to it. Once this has been established, you can begin the process of resolving the issue.


One technique that can be used is to view conflicts from multiple perspectives. This means looking at the situation from all angles – not just your own – and considering how others might perceive or experience it differently than you do. This approach allows you to better understand why certain people may have reacted in certain ways and helps you uncover potential solutions that would otherwise remain hidden.


Another helpful approach is to use metaphors when analyzing conflicts. Three illustrative metaphors are an iceberg, tree, and an earthquake - each one of these can help us analyze agile conflicts too! For example, an iceberg metaphor focuses on understanding why certain issues surface above waterline while others remain submerged beneath it; a tree metaphor emphasizes looking at both root causes and effects of a conflict; and an earthquake metaphor encourages us to consider how much damage has been done by different actions during a conflict situation.

Don’t forget that conflict analysis is not a one-time event – you should continue revisiting and reanalyzing situations so that all relevant information is taken into account. Only then will we be able to make informed decisions about how best to resolve them!


Conflict resolution isn’t something that should be feared – with proper management, it can actually have positive effects on teams and organizations alike! As a Scrum Master or Agile Coach, it's important to remember the importance of emotional intelligence when addressing conflicting situations within teams - being able to view conflicts from multiple perspectives can help uncover potential solutions that would otherwise remain hidden. Additionally, using metaphors like icebergs, trees, or earthquakes when analyzing conflicts is another great way for understanding why certain issues surface above waterline while others remain submerged beneath it etc., which will allow us to make more informed decisions about how best to resolve them!


Finally, keep in mind that this process should never end - ongoing monitoring and reanalysis are key for effectively managing any lingering issues or potential new ones before they become major problems! With this approach in mind, dealing with conflicts shouldn't seem as daunting as ever before!

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