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May 16, 2022

Why Scrum Masters Should Consider the PSM II Training

If you aspire towards a Scrum Master role, having some form of certification on your resume is a must. offers the acclaimed PSM learning track to support Scrum Masters in professionalizing their skills. Roland Flemm is a Scrum Trainer at Gladwell Academy and and has trained hundreds of Scrum Masters over the past few years. Newcomers begin their careers with a PSM I class to gain an understanding of Professional Scrum and the essence of the Scrum Master's role. Yet many Scrum Masters are hesitant to participate in a PSM II training course. This may be because it is unclear to them what the PSM II training has to offer. Perhaps this article will help offer a better understanding.

So, you got your Scrum Master certificate. Now what?

Roland has learned over the years as a Scrum Master that there is a common evolutionary path for Scrum Masters working with Scrum and Agile to learn. After reading the Scrum guide, Roland began working with a team. That is, he tried. The reality was that Roland struggled with himself because he was unsure of this framework. It felt overwhelming and difficult to master. In his opinion, he did not fully understand the concepts. To solve this, Roland took a PSM I course. And, it helped! Roland felt more confident and could focus more on the team and how it functioned. As Ronald himself explained:

"I am sure, however, that I made a lot of useless interventions during that time. I remember my team struggling and asking a lot of questions that I didn't have a good answer for. On the other hand, I got the team engaged in a form of Scrum. I had more space in my head to think, and I started to notice that many of our problems were related to interactions with other teams."

My focus shifted to problems related to scaling Scrum. Much later, after studying scaling, I was drawn to problems in organizational design. I was expanding my scope, using what I had learned and looking for the root causes of my imperfect Scrum.
Roland Flemm, Scrum Trainer

A more in-depth understanding of being a Scrum Master

After Roland got better at dealing with his team's problems, he noticed that he needed three things:

  1. Other Scrum Masters to think about problems he was facing
  2. Skills to deal with larger groups of people
  3. More knowledge about scaling

Roland felt the need to discuss, elaborate, and contemplate difficult Scrum Master dilemmas. He became aware that he was not the only one struggling with different issues. He wanted to know how others viewed things, so that he could in turn learn from them. But unfortunately for him, his Scrum Master colleagues at work were all too busy with their daily challenges.

Facilitating and coaching

Roland subsequently enrolled in a Scrum training course, but that only partly met the needs described above. He also wanted to become better at facilitating and coaching large groups, and therefore followed 'Facilitation for effect'. It was a great course, but unfortunately, it was not Scrum-related. The exercises and skills learned during the course were very useful, but the context of the exercises was very general. There were also no other Scrum practitioners in the class, so the current problems Roland was facing could still not be discussed and shared.


It wasn't until 2018 that introduced the PSM II training course. This training was designed to support experienced Scrum Masters in their professional journey. The content of this training deepens and expands the understanding of Scrum, looking at the challenges Scrum Masters face and how the principles and values of Scrum help you deal with those situations.

PSM II is aimed at those who have practical experience working as a Scrum Master, applying the Scrum framework with one or more teams. The training takes participants through many aspects that affect the effectiveness of the Scrum Master role. The training enhances the skills you need when acting as a trainer, change agent, coach and, most importantly, it enriches your skills as a facilitator.

This training is built on the Liberating Structures. Participants experience Liberating Structures while working on advanced Scrum-related problems. In addition, the Liberating Structures are debriefed, and time is spent reflecting on how the exercises were facilitated. This two-step approach creates a "double loop" that deepens both the content (Scrum) and the structure (facilitation with Liberating Structures). This is a powerful combination that gives you practices you can immediately apply in your daily activities.

The versatility of a Scrum Master

Being a professional Scrum Master is challenging. The job requires a wide range of abilities and skills. The Scrum Master advises, coaches, teaches, and facilitates.

The Professional Scrum Master II training increases your knowledge of complex, advanced Scrum problems and focuses on improving your facilitation skills by adding Liberating Structures to your Scrum Master toolkit.

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Written by Gladwell Academy, but most of our content is created by trainers and partnering experts!