A metaphor for team agility – GPS systems

Using a predetermined set of roles, events, artifacts and rules is like having a GPS that just gives you the directions without the map. If you get lost or you can’t make a turn or you miss it you are lost.

Being given a map with alternatives to get there provides not only options that work for you but provide a way of getting back on track when you get lost. In the complex world of software development it is even more likely you’ll need this ability.

Many people require a given set path. But have it include where you are and have it provide you with a reset option when you get lost. This is what Lean-based team Agile does. Scrum doesn’t even try because you are out of Scrum by this time. Scrum proponents just call this Scrumbut and go on to the next team. This doesn’t mean you can’t use Scrum, it just means that when you do Scrum you should do it within the context of Lean.

2 thoughts on “A metaphor for team agility – GPS systems”

  1. I contest that Scrum as a framework does allow for this, it is called the Sprint Retrospective. IMHO – Often teams abandon this ritual, thus short circuiting the double loop learning that makes scrum framework valuable. There are many reasons why this occurs, I suspect a lot to do with the fact that we are all nurtured on single loop learning through our schooling, college etc. and work environment only reinforce this in the name of ‘time efficiency’. Learning isn’t a goal within organizations, or at least not one that makes the annual goals/objectives

  2. Thanks for the comment.
    i’m not saying Scrum doesn’t allow for it – but Scrum training just starts with the basics of Scrum. It does not provide any guidance on how to do it.
    For example, it does not provide something like the Value Stream Impedance Scorecard –
    which provides insights on better ways to do things.

    But the second point is that you can improve Scrum as long as you stay within Scrum. What if cross-functional teams are difficult to get – or even inadvisable (say limited SME knowledge across teams). For example, not having options for the team is like having a GPS where you can’t say “avoid freeways” an option my wife likes.

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