Common Smells of Story Points Costing Organizations Millions of dollars of Waste

The first post on this blog on story points was written in 2006. Fourteen years later not much has changed in the industry. What has changed is more companies are now using story points, and collectively we spend millions and millions of dollars talking about the same topic in team rooms, and leadership rooms across the world.

Smells in no specific order:

  1. Converting Story Points to Hours.
  2. Partial Story Points.
  3. Comparing Teams based on completed story points.
  4. Asking for more and more story points to be completed by teams.
  5. Dev Story Points and QA Story points or Front end and backend story points.
  6. Trying to force a story to fit a certain range of story point.
  7. Giving an update on % of story points completed during the sprint based on the percentage of tasks done.
  8. Changing the size of stories when work is already started.
  9. Pointing everything since there is a pressure to show velocity. Bugs, Tech Debt Items, Spikes etc
  10.  Spending most of the time of people in refinement to talk about getting the size right