Here are some things I have learned from Scrum.
- Cross functional teams are good. Just having them achieves a three to tenfold improvement over a group of people working on several projects at once. And they improve innovation by the team.
- Time-boxing increases discipline, visibility and the ability to pivot.
- Small batches are good and breaking work down into small pieces is essential.
- Smaller release cycles improve most everything.
- It is useful to have a team coach.
- Do not expect people to figure out what they need to do just because you have put them in a framework.
- Focus on learning the practices of a framework makes learning what you actually need to accomplish (flow) harder.
- People like to be given a set of practices to use.
- Defining a simple set of practices to use can lead to rigid dogma.
- Take an approach that transitions you to the behaviors you need.
- Approaches that work well in one context may not work well in another even though people them everywhere without noticing this.
- And, just because you can put whatever you want into a framework, that doesn’t mean the framework is not prescriptive. In itself, the framework has things you must do.
And finally, it is best to think of frameworks as tools, not solutions.
This is Al Shalloway. Visit us at www.netobjectives.com.