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2937RE: [scrumdevelopment] Question about impediments

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  • Mike Beedle
    Mar 10, 2004
      Daniel:

      Great questions!

      "Impediments" are issues that directly affect the
      completion of tasks in the Sprint Backlog that
      the ScrumMaster helps to resolve.

      As a rule Scrum member teams are not allowed to work
      on anything but tasks on the Sprint Backlog. I know
      in companies this is hard to accomplish, but
      setting some limits on the Sprint Backlog helps.
      For example, you can allow a task like "Unplanned Meetings"
      4 hrs per developer, etc.

      We even include a Sprint Backlog item called:

      Scrum Management -- it typically requires only
      about 16 - 24 hrs.

      Here is my take on this list:

      * I have to leave early to take my kid to an appointment

      Not an impediment if occurs once, simply taking
      time off, that should not affect the completion
      of tasks if the time is compensated (with improved
      effort). If it affects the completion of tasks
      with perhaps repeated incidents, it would be
      considered an impediment. Talk to your developer.
      Perhaps helping this team member needs help.

      * I have to attend the weekly project managers' meeting

      If it is not in the Sprint Backlog it should not be
      a part of a Scrum team member tasks. If it is
      a task that must occur, then it should be accounted
      in the backlog.

      * My hard drive failed

      This is an impediment. The ScrumMaster should
      help fix it.

      * I wasted time gossiping

      Not an impediment if it does not affect the completion
      of a task over time.

      * I was asked to give a presentation on agile techniques

      If it is not in the backlog it should not be
      a part of a Scrum team member tasks. If it is
      a task that must occur, then it should be accounted
      in the backlog.

      * I attended a code review on an unrelated product

      If it is not in the backlog it should not be
      a part of a Scrum team member tasks. If it is
      a task that must occur, then it should be accounted
      in the backlog.

      * Some vacuous meeting keeps recurring and someone wants
      me to go

      If it is not in the backlog it should not be
      a part of a Scrum team member tasks. If it is
      a task that must occur, then it should be accounted
      in the backlog.

      * The company requires me to fill out these forms

      If it is not in the backlog it should not be
      a part of a Scrum team member tasks. If it is
      a task that must occur, then it should be accounted
      in the backlog.

      > So, what sorts of things are intended to be cited as
      > "impediments" in the daily Scrum? Does the "impediments"
      > question mean:
      >
      > --> List anything that took up your time that
      > wasn't part of this project

      > Scrum teams don't do anyting that is not in the
      > Product Backlog and Sprint Bakclogs :-)
      >
      > --> Mention only things you are asking the ScrumMaster
      > to do something about or something else again?

      "Impediments" are issues that directly affect the
      completion of tasks in the Sprint Backlog that
      the ScrumMaster helps to resolve.

      - Mike

      http://www.mikebeedle.com

      "In life as in dance: Grace glides on blistered feet."

      --Alice Abrams
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