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Really, just go and try it!: Roxana

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About Roxana

Roxana moved to Backbase Amsterdam two and a half years ago to join our Academy Team as Instructional Designer. Today she is on a quest to help R&D teams become the best version of themselves through her Scrum Master role.

Our Academy team is where all the Backbase knowledge lives and where it is shared with others. I joined them to pick up on a big project at the time: improving our Product online courses. You can think about them as a fun instruction manual that you want to read ;). 

As an Instructional Designer I felt I had a lot to offer. During this time I learned a lot about the product and I could actively contribute to make the courses more interactive and really shape them to make it easy for people to learn.


Let the team be the driving force

At Backbase we don't stand still for long. Soon after that project finished the team started brainstorming on how to make our classroom training more efficient and scalable. A colleague suggested recording it and making virtual classrooms. How amazing it is to have people thinking one step ahead! The team got their hands onto it and one month into the pandemic in 2020 we were launching our online training… seamlessly! This was a true team initiative that we were very proud to present and drive, kudos to the team!

Putting myself in their shoes

As time went on, I kept on thinking about what can be done better and where we can improve. I wanted to help my team to work better together and collaborate better with others, especially our R&D department. 

When I started thinking about it, I realized R&D is used to working Agile. What better way of bridging the gap than trying to speak their own language? This motivated me to start reading about Agile methodologies. Little by little I got in touch with our Backbase Agile Community. I joined their Slack channels, listened to their advice… They really welcomed me with open arms. They were very generous and they agreed to mentor me, special thanks to James and Viktoria! They believed in me and encouraged me to explore my curiosity. Before I noticed, I had enrolled in a course and I was receiving my Scrum Master certification.

Learning by doing

If you want to learn, you have to do it. That was the advice from Victoria. "Only" having a Scrum Master certification didn't feel enough to play the role. Who could help me make the decision to change my career path? At the time I found another colleague, Bea,  who had also transitioned to the Scrum Master role. She answered my questions, supported me, and more importantly, she believed I could do it. She took away some of my fears and gave me what we sometimes need, a little push.

The Scrum Master ride

I started shadowing a Scrum Master in our R&D department to get familiar with the day-to-day activities, and at the end of 2020 I heard a new team was going to be created. There I went to talk to José, the Product Owner, and expressed my eagerness to be their Scrum Master (even though they weren't looking for one!). The holidays approached without news… My expectations were low. Until... the first week of January when I received a positive response, I was being called to join that new team. How exciting! 

With the intention of doing things right, and with all my books at hand, I started in my Scrum Master role. The team is happy, I am learning every day, what else could I wish for! 

I could wish for… another team? I got assigned a second team in mid-March and by April I was working 100% as Scrum Master in R&D. I can say I have successfully transitioned roles within Backbase.

From Instructional Designer to Scrum Master, one way and without layovers. That's how it goes. Before you know it, you see your dreams come true. Really, just go and try it!

I'm very grateful for all my colleagues that supported me on this journey. 


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