Why Being Explicit in Workflow is Useful: Case Study, Scrum Based on Lean Flow

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Scrum is a lightweight framework that encourages correct action through performing its ceremonies and practices. While that is great in theory, the lack of the “why” of the ceremonies often has them be not followed.

Consider the “sprint” in Scrum. According to the Scrum Guide, “The heart of Scrum is a Sprint, a time-box of one month or less during which a ‘Done,’ usable, and potentially releasable product increment is created.”

It implies the need to start and finish stories in the same iteration. In other words, one of its objectives is to have a short time between the beginning of a story until it is completed. Here is what this provides.

  • Feedback on the story’s functionality
  • Feedback on the time to build the story
  • Feedback on any dependencies that might not have been noticed
  • Value in moving the solution forward

This removes the delays in workflow, feedback, and getting and using information which create the unplanned work. It also makes explicit that we shouldn’t have separate analysis, design, code and test sprints.

The objective: Stories always need to be small. This is implied but not explicitly stated in Scrum.

Understanding the why of a practice always makes it more likely that it will actually get done.

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