Why Empathy Matters For Scrum Masters

And How To Maintain It

Britta Ollrogge, MBA


The sun above a hand
Photo by Aamir Suhail on Unsplash

As Scrum Masters, our job is to lead and support the team. An essential part of this role is the ability to be empathetic. Empathy means seeing things from someone else’s perspective and understanding their emotions. It is vital to communication and relationships, especially in the work environment.

Why empathy is important

Empathy is crucial because it helps create a positive work environment where team members trust and respect each other. By putting ourselves in others’ shoes, we can better understand what they are going through and consider their needs and perspectives. We can better resolve conflict and motivate them when we are empathetic. That is especially important in an agile environment, where collaboration, transparency, and communication are key.

How to stay empathetic

Empathy can be challenging, especially in stressful or difficult situations. Here are five tips on how to stay empathetic as a Scrum Master:

  1. Practice active listening: Listen carefully to what others are saying and make sure you understand their perspectives and needs. Then, ask open questions to gain more insight.
  2. Pay attention to body language: pay attention to the body language and nonverbal signals of others. You can often learn more about a person’s emotions and needs by reading their body language.
  3. Avoid judgments: Don’t judge others’ opinions or views. Instead, try to put yourself in their shoes and understand their perspectives.
  4. Be patient: Sometimes, it takes time to understand others’ perspectives. Be patient and respect others’ processes for expressing themselves.
  5. Practice self-reflection: reflect on your thoughts and emotions and try to put yourself in others’ shoes. That can help you become more empathetic toward others.


Empathy is an essential part of the role of a Scrum Master. By remaining empathetic, we can create a positive work environment where team members treat each other with trust and respect. However, remaining empathic requires practice and awareness, especially in stressful situations. By actively listening, paying attention to body language, avoiding judgment, being patient, and self-reflecting, you can become more empathetic as a Scrum Master and help your team be successful.

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Britta Ollrogge, MBA

I write on Self Improvement 🌱, Productivity 🎯, and Agile Product Development 🏄. My goal is to inspire.💡https://www.britta-ollrogge-consulting.com