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scrum

Scrum team having a productive retrospective Are Your Retrospectives Adding Value to Your Scrum Team?

Sprint retrospectives are often skipped, compressed, or organized in a way that doesn't provide good feedback. This is unfortunate, as a well-planned retrospective is a great way to improve how you work. Good retrospectives enable engagement and safety, distill and prioritize ideas, and create concrete action items.

Steve Berczuk's picture
Steve Berczuk
Software team in a meeting The Myth of Too Many Scrum Meetings

A common complaint in organizations adopting Scrum is that Scrum has too many meetings. However, people may not be considering all the time they spent meeting before Scrum—and how effective that time really was. As long as you keep meetings focused, people should waste less time in meetings than they did before Scrum.

Steve Berczuk's picture
Steve Berczuk
Red apple fitting in with green apples Making Testing Work within Your Sprints

A common problem for Scrum teams is having a good understanding of what work is complete by the end of the sprint. Teams often end with a few items coded but not fully tested, but since the goal of a sprint is to have a deliverable increment of work, skipping tests isn’t a good idea. Here's how you can fit them in.

Steve Berczuk's picture
Steve Berczuk
Looking upward at trees in a forest Scrum Can Help You See the Forest and the Trees

In project management, it's easy to focus on details to the extent that you lose track of the larger goal. Scrum can help you identify flaws and gaps, and skipping or trivializing Scrum events will just hide the fact that there are things you need to improve. Finding problems is something to be celebrated, not hidden.

Steve Berczuk's picture
Steve Berczuk
A watch with the second hand moving fast The Agile Culture You Need for Faster Pull Requests

Is your process for pull requests compromising your team's agility? You can structure your changes in a way that facilitates more rapid feedback, but even then it is still possible to have a slow integration time if people don’t review pull requests promptly. Mechanics are part of it, but culture also matters.

Steve Berczuk's picture
Steve Berczuk
Scrum team member taking a card from the product backlog The Difference between Priority and Order in Your Agile Work

The Scrum Guide talks about an ordered backlog, not a prioritized one. While order and priority are related, they are not the same, and understanding the difference and why people focus on one over the other can help your team be more effective at delivering business value.

Steve Berczuk's picture
Steve Berczuk
Scrum team's technical lead sitting at a laptop Do’s and Don’ts for Having a Technical Lead on a Scrum Team

Technical leads can be useful, both within the dev team and as a go-between. But is that a good idea on a Scrum team, which should be self-organizing? There is nothing wrong with having a technical lead on your team, as long as the role doesn’t impede the team. Here's where a tech lead can help or hurt a Scrum team.

Steve Berczuk's picture
Steve Berczuk
Agile team members refining the product backlog Refine Your Product Backlog Continuously to Improve Flow

One way to address poorly defined product backlog items is to spend time refining the items as you go. Refining the backlog continuously helps the team deliver consistently and can lead to shorter planning meetings at the start of the sprint. It can even help improve reliability, velocity, and the quality of work.

Steve Berczuk's picture
Steve Berczuk