Role Team Facilitator

We have two variations of this role: The Scrum Master serves our Value Stream Teams, the Team Facilitator (this role) serves all other teams.


The Team that needs to role
If need is still unclear, the Delegator of the Team


At VSHN, our teams operate semi-autonomously, which involves not only carrying out operational tasks—such as building, delivering, and maintaining products for our customers—but also self-managing to function effectively as a team and continually improve. This means ensuring that the Fundamental Team Responsibilities are adequately addressed by the team, for example organizing and prioritizing work, and reviewing results to deliver effectively on their purpose. If we provide the necessary support for teams to successfully navigate the complexities of being self-managed, self-organizing, and continuously improving, we can foster strong, effective teams. This would enable individuals to focus on actual work while collectively sharing the team’s responsibilities.

We believe there is a need to assign a dedicated role in each team, focused on the team’s effectiveness and the team’s fundamental responsibilities. This will allow other team members to concentrate on the actual value-creating work, while the role owner can direct their attention to these specific topics.


  • The Team: Needs the to function as a semi-autonomous, self-managed team and improve to fulfil their delegated purpose.

  • The Team Members: Need help to navigate complexity, focus, commit, overcome personal challenges.

  • The Delegator of the Team: Needs a go-to person on how the team works and what clarity or support they need, also to get insights on how our defined system and principles work in practice at VSHN in a Team.

Key Responsibilities

In general, ensuring (not necessarily doing it yourself) the team has addressed all Fundamental Team Responsibilities good enough. More specifically:

To the Team
  • Coaching the team members to develop self-management, cross-functionality, and effective working methods;

  • Understanding the team’s purpose, constraints, and dependencies to point out issues in being effective and acting within those boundaries.

  • Helping the team focus on creating high-value increments that meet the stakeholders needs and team’s Definition of Done.

  • Leading the removal of impediments to the team’s progress.

  • Ensuring that meetings are hosted and moderated to be effective and efficient (do it or help to do it).

  • Facilitating Governance synchronously (for example, governance meetings) and asynchronously - for team level governance items.

  • Facilitate goal setting (OKRs), tracking progress, reviewing and process retros.

  • Helping find techniques for effective work item definition and Backlog management.

  • Helping establish an empirical planning process.

To the Organization
  • Ensure the interface with the teams’s Delegator.

  • Facilitating stakeholder collaboration as requested or needed.

  • Removing barriers and impediments between the team’s stakeholders, dependencies and the team.

  • Be the leader, an agent of change within the teams for our organization’s development.

Key Deliverables

  • A Trainer, Coach, supporter and facilitator for the Team on the above Key Responsibilities

  • A Go-to person for the organization on the topics of how the team functions and works

  • A Go-to person for the team members on the above Key Responsibilities

  • A Representative in cross-team governance on topics for the team

  • An Owner of team level governance topics to remove impediments and improve how the team functions

  • Documentation on how the team functions

Skills and Mindsets

This roles require specific skills and mindsets to be effective. If the a role keeper doesn’t meet the requirements, training is required. What is needed at which level depends on the context the Facilitator acts (which team, used methodologies / frameworks, etc.), the following is the needed minimum.

The following skills on the "Ha" (Shu-Ha-Ri) Level
  • Solid understanding of how VSHN works. Facilitating the semi-autonomous, self-managed culture of the team via S3 patterns, primarily: role selection, consent decision-making, describing organizational drivers, peer review, governance backlog on the Team level.

  • Teaching and Facilitation of Objective and Key Results on the Team Level

  • Strong social skills, ability to connect with people, empathy, mindfulness and self-awareness.

  • Sociocracy 3.0 principles, primarily Equivalence and Consent

  • Agile, primarily iterative and incremental value delivery and review cycle, in Operations and for Governance on the Team level.


What leadership means in this context

The responsibility for the team’s domain and their Fundamental Team Responsibilities stays with the whole team, not with this role.

role team facilitator.drawio

Key Challenges

  • Don’t become the boss of the team - stay the servant leader and facilitator. See what this means at VSHN.

  • Care about and lead the topics defined in your role, do the operational work defined in the role - Don’t become the person doing all the meta work for others, just because they don’t care - help team to share the responsibility and workload instead!

Role Assignment

By default, every team at VSHN needs to cover what is defined in this role - assigning this role to someone in the team is the suggested way.

How the team implements this role, is up to the team, under the constraints defined here. This role description defines the minimum responsibilities to cover, and general constraints. Value Stream Teams have a more specific role defined, the Scrum Master.

Delegator Responsibilities

The Team
  • Ensure that what is outline in this role, and especially the Fundamental Team Responsibilities are addressed good enough.

  • Support the role keeper by sticking to the role definition and not overloading them with additional duties. Especially if the role keeper as another primary role.

The Delegator of the Team
  • Ensure that the team has a way to address the Fundamental Team Responsibilities.

  • Break up situations where the Team doesn’t understand their responsibilities yet because of the lack of a role like this.

Evaluation Criteria

Binary evaluations as tools of measure to show how a role keeper is succeeding:

  • As a Team Facilitator

  • As a Leader

What does it mean for a Team Facilitator to be a Leader?

role team facilitator eval criteria.drawio

What does it mean for a Team Facilitator to be failing or succeeding?

role team facilitator eval criteria2.drawio

This role is tracked and reviewed as VIP-255