Evolution of Scrum — A Trip Down Memory Lane

  • Development Teams do not make a “commitment” to completing the work planned during a Sprint Planning Meeting, but rather, create a “forecast” of work which is expected to change as more becomes known throughout the Sprint. I think this to be very interesting given that most teams I work with today still think that the Sprint plan is a “commitment”; this shows the lack of general understanding of Scrum in the industry.
  • The Product Backlog is “ordered” instead of “prioritized”. Similar to #1, I think this is a minor yet important distinction that many teams don’t understand. “Prioritized” implies that the team must follow the sequence, where as “ordered” offers the team the flexibility to negotiate what makes the most sense with the Product Owner.
  • Removed the reference to “chickens and pigs”. The story of the “chicken and the pig” was notorious for creating an unexpected divide between the “worker bees” and “management”. I still refer back to this story to explain to teams that the Scrum team should operate as a single team with no differentiation of hierarchy.
  • Scrum consists of events that are time-boxed events, such that every event has a maximum duration but not a required duration. This is a rule that is often misunderstood by teams.
  • The importance of the Daily Scrum as a planning event is reinforced to clarify its intent. To this day, I still see most new Scrum teams struggle to understand the purpose of the Daily Scrum, which is a bit surprising.
  • The “Uses of Scrum” was added to explain that it can be used effectively for a variety of projects, not only software product development. While I feel that this is a positive change, I still see many opportunities to showcase non-software projects more widely in order to demonstrate Scrum’s success stories in these domains.
  • The format of the Daily Scrum was relaxed slightly to allow the team to develop its own approach rather than following the standard 3-question format as described previously. I see this as a great change that more teams should take advantage of in effort to continue innovating and avoid stagnation.

An Alten Company, Cprime is a global consulting firm helping transforming businesses get in sync.

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An Alten Company, Cprime is a global consulting firm helping transforming businesses get in sync.

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