Since Keepler was born more than four years ago, we have always been committed to Agile from the point of view of how to approach the projects and products in which we are involved. This has provided us with a lot of learning as we have been collaborating with different clients who are often large companies with a very deep-rooted and long-lived culture, resistant to change by nature and with very established habits in terms of project management.

Our position here has been to try to adapt in order to provide a better service. Adapt to them, yes, but without forgetting our belief in the way we manage projects. The result is a process of internal inspection and adaptation that has led us to make many changes, one of them being our interpretation of the management role.

What is a Scrum Master?

At Keepler we have never seen the Scrum Master as a profile that just follows what the Scrum guide says, applying the framework mechanically in projects.

Instead, we have seen him/her as a change agent: someone with a backpack full of tools (skills) that he/she can use in one way or another depending on the context in which he/she is interacting.

And from Keepler’s point of view (“Boutique” of professional services) it means that these skills have two areas:

  • Internal skills: those in which they generate value internally. This is important because for us any citizenK is not only a person who develops with the client, but also, to the same extent, with the processes and people “internal” in the company.
  • External skills: those related to our impact on the clients we work with.

With these premises in mind, from Keepler’s Agile circle we decided to “refactor” the parameters in which we ourselves measured our performance and the way we did it was following our philosophy in the company: we created a self-organized working group formed by people from the same Agile circle.

The backpack of an Agile management profile

What should we measure from any Keepler Agile profile? How do we group what we currently have? What activities do we actually do on projects? Should we continue to do them?

Those were the first questions we asked ourselves when we started to tackle the change. 

What we had until that moment when evaluating and measuring a management profile was a compendium of aspects to assess differentiated by level of experience such as Scrum framework, Agile scaling, Management 3.0, product inception… But it was not weighted and we left it up to the people who were evaluating to decide what had more weight when deciding if a person had enough knowledge and experience at any level. It was something that covered pretty well what clients were asking for, but the skills that were in the backpack were not weighted so we decided to create a set of pillars on which to base our professional career as a way to evaluate the following:


How project management is performed when a strictly Agile approach cannot be applied, projects with closed scope and high delivery responsibility.

Scrum Framework

How the framework is interpreted and introduced and how this transition has improved the delivery of the teams.

Agile Practices

Practices, frameworks and methodologies that can be applied beyond Scrum.


How was the interaction with the Agile community in the form of articles, CoPs, talks, meetups, etc.


How was the performance as an agent of change in different contexts.


How was the involvement in the company’s internal initiatives (Keepler if you are already a Citizen-K).

Adjusting the names of our profiles

Considering that our new Scrum Framework perception was one more pillar within a larger whole and that we are contemplating scenarios that are not purely Agile (scope or time locked) we decided to change 2 of the names of our three levels of management profiles from more junior to more senior:

  • Scrum Master: we kept the name we had before. In this case we emphasize that we are going to give more importance to Scrum Framework in our “junior” profiles at management level. It is our way of marking a clear base from which to start in the Agile career at Keepler.
  • From Scrum Master Sr to Agile Delivery Manager:: in this case the message is different. Scrum Framework is important, but there are more aspects related to the company (community, culture, Keepler, management) that start to gain more weight and, from the customer’s point of view, there are more things besides Scrum Framework (Agile practices and management). Let’s say that in the T (from the T-shaped model) the vertical line starts to shorten and the horizontal ends start to grow.
  • ​​From Agile Coach to Agile Change Manager: it did not make sense to keep calling our more senior profiles Agile Coach. It often generated misunderstandings with customers and our learning is that what customers demand when they hear that name is more a profile with a lot of experience in project management prepared to use different tools depending on the situation. Also from the internal point of view we wanted to associate this role with internal involvement in Keepler, otherwise we ran the risk of having profiles more focused on their development in customers without providing internal learning and value. Referring again to the T, now the ends are almost the same as the vertical line on which the T sits.

Matrix representing how much each pillar weighs within the Agile career at Keepler.

The “what” changes, but not the “how”

After refactoring, the “what” is validated within each career level is changed, but the “how” this validation is performed is not modified. This image illustrates our process (based on the “advice process” practice of Reinventing Organizations by Frederic Laloux):

  1. Self-assessment by a K-Citizen from the agile circle using our matrix.
  2. Evaluation by three people within the Agile circle collecting information: interviews, feedback, experiences, etc.
  3. Result of the evaluation decided by the evaluators taking into account the matrix.

Change is applied… and measured

This is a change that we have made during 2022 and, like any change, its impact must always be measured taking into account the two dimensions on which it is based: 

  • The internal point of view: feedback from those evaluated and evaluators of the process, mood of the people in the circle, etc. To measure this, surveys are conducted on the process once each evaluation window is over, which are launched from the People circle, and another specific survey on the changes made in the professional career that we will launch from the Agile circle itself.
  • The external point of view: satisfaction of our customers, delivery of value in the projects/products we are involved in, etc. To measure this we have customer surveys that we launch from the Business Development circle.

Time and experience will tell us to what extent we have been successful with the change, although, taking into account the empirical approach we have followed, we are quite optimistic. In any case, inspection and adaptation will be the way forward in order to adapt to future scenarios that may arise.

Image: Unsplash | @joshuaearle


  • Pedro Serrano

    Agile Coach en Keepler. "I am a proactive person who loves teamwork and motivating people. I consider that communication is the key to the achievement of a successful project."