What is the difference between a Project Manager and a Scrum Master?

I searched the internet before writing this post and did find a lot of articles and discussions on the differences between a project manager and a scrum master. There are of course some key differences and some people would argue that the roles are completely different. However in the working world these  roles will at times, have merged and their has been cross over between the two roles. I believe myself one of the key elements to delivering success is not to work to a rigid structure and adjust according to what works best with the team and people working in the project. –  Just get a scrum on 🙂

Scrum Master:

It has been recommended in Agile Scrum that the scrum master should work for the team and remove all the impediments of the team. The scrum master is like a mentor and coach for the team. Driving them forward and creating the best possible working environment. 

Project Manager:

Although the project manager may also fill the roles as above. The role is more expected to be one that makes decisions on their own and will responsibilities such as project planning, monitoring, budget control and managing the project.

The following information below was written by Steve Hunton on the Scrum alliance website

Traditionally, the project manager is a leader, a decision maker, a planner, someone who manages the project and the team and is the person accountable to the business for accomplishing the project objectives. The ScrumMaster’s role is more that of coach and facilitator, a role that sits between the project and the customer. The ScrumMaster doesn’t manage the team that produces the work; instead, he supports the product owner, coaches the team, and makes sure that Scrum processes are adhered to. The ScrumMaster is responsible for the Scrum process, its correct and continuous implementation, and the maximization of its benefits.

The Video below from 352 Inc – also gives a good overview of the differences between the Scrum Master and Project Manager.


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