Scrum Your Meetings

How can we make our meetings productive. This is a billion-dollar question. Even if each one of us improve our meetings by 1% we save $$$ s for our organizations. In this article, we look at one such technique called  Scrum Your Meetings: Why Scrum Your Meetings: In the first few pages of the book called…

How much of Agile is too much?

Many years ago, by which I mean 1996, I got attracted to something called Extreme Programming. I loved the fact that we could work in small teams, created tested products. People like Martin Fowler, Uncle Bob, Dave Thomas made things more real. Using Scrum was easy as Scrum mostly works nicely at the team level.…

What is the role of HR in the Success of an employee in an Agile Organization?

In Organizations that practice Agility, there is a growing need now to reimagine the role of HR. In this article, we see just from an employees perspective areas when HR interacts with an employee during the employee life cycle. Mark has worked for 12 years. He has a masters degree. He is well respected in…

Can Agile work for Infrastructure and Ops Groups?

Yes. Agile can work with Infra and ops groups. This article outlines some basic principles during your agile transformation journey. When an organization gets more and more Agile soon they realize that one of their bottlenecks in their own IT operations department. With the concept of physical datacenters slowly moving to the cloud the nature…

Scrum Essentials

What is Scrum? Role:  Scrum Product Owner Role: ScrumMaster Role: Team Artifact: Working Agreement? Artifact: Product Backlog Artifact: Sprint Backlog Artifact: Definition of done? Artifact: Definition of ready? Event: Sprint Planning Defined What is the most important role in the Scrum team? Paper napkin design? What is MosCow Rule? Measuring success in agile projects? How…

What is Sprint Planning?

Why Sprint Planning: Remember is Scrum we work in baby steps. Sprint Planning is the event where we plan what we can achieve as a Scrum Team in Two weeks. We need all members of the team in the Sprint Planning. Giving a sports analogy this is the meeting on the day of the big game…

Paper Plane Game

Purpose: To demonstrate the power of time-box or Sprint that makes the heartbeat of an agile framework like Scrum. Type:  Team Game Time Needed: 45 minutes Number of people per team: 6 Supplies Needed: Used Printer Paper 50 per team One flip chart and a marker to keep score The goal of the game: The…

Unlike Monopoly – The Best Scrum Simulation Game for Workshops

Overview: I have been teaching Agile workshops since 2007. I have experimented with various games over the years. In 2014 or so I modified the Scrum Simulation game which I do in day 2 of my workshop and found that people got hooked into this. Some twists this game has makes it a real learning…

Meetings – From Hell – Part 1

If you take any average size company meetings are a given. Be definItion ( dictionary.com ) a meeting is an assembly of people, especially the members of a society or committee, for discussion or entertainment I wish here what it said was something like A meeting is a pointless gathering of employees in a room…

Agile Metrics

This article presents guidelines and examples of metrics you as a leader can help set for the group or team It is really important that an organization does not measure only to demonstrate to others in the company that things are getting done. There is a false sense of comfort in these metrics. It is…

What does a Manager do in an Agile Organization?

This article covers the role of a people manager in the context of an Organization. There is a lot of data on what Product Owners do, Scrum Masters do etc. However, when someone takes over the important role of People Manager, there is confusion in teams from a refusal to listen to the manager, to…

Behaviors in an Agile Delivery Team

As a Team Member of an Agile Team, we are always looking to understand what behaviours we should encourage and see practised within a high-performance Agile Team. Here is a list of 14 behaviours that as a team member you should model. I once learned this from an Agile expert. Be the example you want others to…

Looking Beyond Large Scale Agility

After being involved with a group that is probably the most Agile anywhere in the world, seeing hundreds of companies over the last decade trying to become Agile and so miserably at that, or after having taught Leadership, Kanban, Scrum and Agile Engineering workshops and finding that the same problems exist in organizations that existed…

Agile Defined

The manifesto is governed by 4 Values and 12 Principles. Being Agile sticks when companies focus ground up starting with building the value system followed by practicing the values, doing some of the practices and hence getting the benefits. This is often referred as Inside Out Agility. Under the Agile Umbrella, there are many methods.…

Practicing Scrum Well

Just like any sports team. there can be the winners like the ones who go to the super bowl, or those that get kicked out each year right before the playoffs even start. ( If you don’t know American Football you may not get this point. I live in Seattle where football is a big…

How Does Scrum Feel?

Let’s get some keywords out of the way first.   Scrum  – A framework to deliver value to the customer iteratively. Sprint – A time box where an increment of value is delivered. Mostly 1, 2, 3 or 4 weeks. Roles-  Scrum has Three Roles. Scrum Master – Remover of impediments. Team motivator, Servant leader Product…

Leadership Models and Books

As an Agile leader I find it useful to be reading books on leadership and models I can learn from. Here are recommended reading if you are a leader working with people. 7 Habits of Effective People Primal Leadership or Emotional Intelligence ( Goleman) The Fifth Discipline  ( Senge) Fierce Conversations (Scott) Good To Great…

New ScrumMaster Checklist

This list is a place for new ScrumMasters for their very first ScrumMaster Job. Welcome to your new ScrumMaster task. It is a tough one and sure is confusing. No Organization actually has a role like this. So where do you start. Set up a meeting with  your manager and the manager of the team…

Are you failing with Agile, Here is a checklist to help you fail?

I had a very interesting coffee discussion yesterday with a senior product engineer at a very large cloud computing team. It was centered around the fact that in Scrum when we put the pressure of velocity and show the demo, teams start shipping crap to customers. Many teams working in Scrum and Agile techniques take…

How much to jump?

I was talking to a very senior exec of  US Corporation who was comparing his India Agile team with the Brazilian Agile team and I was really amazed at the way he said it. That got me writing this article as I think he is right. Here is what he said – I ask my…

Request your contribution to Scrum Awareness In India

State of Scrum In India Hello my name is Vibhu Srinivasan and some of you may know me. I am passionate about Agile practices and practice agile in everything I do from running  business to helping at home.  I am presenting on a topic called “Is Scrum For India” in the upcoming Scrum Gathering India…

What is Velocity?

Velocity can be termed as the run rate of the team . Agile teams use this metric to measure how much work was done in a sprint so that we know how much more is left to actually make the reason. Let take a simple example. The team has ten stories whose total story point…

Is Scrum Agile dead in India?

To put things in perspective I am a Certifed Scrum Trainer and have been working with teams in India for three years.i am a developer that has been in this business for 18 years mostly in XP teams. I was recently in a very interesting discussion with one of the handful of folks in India…

Scrum In Chinese

I was recently a teaching a class of Chinese Students in Malaysia. They wrote definitions of Scrum in Chinese language. I am sharing this for general benefit.

What is Definition of Ready?

  Definition of ready is a list that the product owner and team agree to. Think of it as a working agreement between the team and product owner on what readiness means. It is a Input criteria to accepting story in a sprint. It is a way for a product owner to signal an item…

What does ScrumMaster do in Scrum?

“The servant-leader is servant first… It begins with the natural feeling that one wants to serve, to serve first. Then conscious choice brings one to aspire to lead. That person is sharply different from one who is leader first…” – Robert K. Greenleaf ScrumMaster is a ideally a full time role. Good ScrumMasters are people…

What is a Product Backlog?

Product Backlog is one the artifacts of Scrum. The product owner writes the product backlog. It is an ordered list. This is a list like grocery list. Each item in the product backlog is called a product backlog item (PBI) . The product owner orders into one order based on business value , risk  and…

What does Product Owner do in Scrum?

The essence of Scrum is “Business Drives Development” The role called Product Owner meets this scrum essence. The product owner with his or her vision works with all the stakeholders , other business groups and creates a product road map for the product. They also answer all the questions teams have with regards to the…

What is Scrum?

Scrum in 10 lines Scrum is a framework to manage complex projects based on empirical process control mechanisms. Scrum is based on inspection, adaption, timebox and transparency. Scrum is based on five values – openness, respect, courage, commitment and focus Scrum teams do work in timeboxes called Sprint which is either 1, 2, 3, or…

Self Organizing Team – This is not a myth

Here is an email message from one of the coaches who is helping a team The “Code Warriors” team has transformed itself into a self-organizing teams. They have gone from a cycle of 8 to 9 days to complete a user story to a new cycle of 1.5 days and they are now capable of…

%d bloggers like this: