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57190Re: [scrumdevelopment] Concept of "work ahead" team

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  • George Dinwiddie
    Sep 3, 2013
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      On 9/3/13 8:34 PM, Adrian Howard wrote:
      > On 3 September 2013 17:52, George Dinwiddie <lists@...> wrote:
      >> I've found that grooming stories with the whole team can drag on and on,
      >> accomplishing relatively little and frustrating everyone. On the other
      >> hand, it's important that everyone have some involvement. It's
      >> particularly important that someone doing the work not be handed an
      >> estimate made by someone not doing the work.
      > Are there other ways to drop the annoyance level? For example:
      > * grooming less at a time (my preference)

      That's part of this. But when we first did this, it was also part of the
      whole team exercise.

      > * things like affinity estimation
      > (http://kanemar.com/2008/04/21/scrum-trainers-gathering-44-affinity-estimating/)

      Estimating is not part of the grooming. That's generally done at the
      planning meeting by the whole team. And, yes, I find affinity estimating
      a better technique than most. I've considered counting the scenarios. I
      generally recommend calling them all "1."

      > Not arguing that 3 Amigos is a useful approach... but as years go buy
      > I'm more and more hesitant about approaches that stop the whole team
      > participating.

      I suppose you can do mob programming, but most teams don't have
      everybody working together on every task.

      The Three Amigos approach doesn't stop the whole team from
      participating. It does gain a lot of clarity in small group discussions,
      but that clarity is then brought to the whole team at planning time. The
      whole team is then able to assess each story more quickly. In my
      experience, if people think that important scenarios are missing,
      they'll generally say something.

      The use of acceptance scenarios makes it easy to keep straight on what
      is in a particular story, and what is out. Confusion over what's in and
      what's out seems to cause most of the problems in whole-team grooming
      exercises, in my experience. After a discussion that says "this part is
      in and that part is out," invariably someone brings up the need for
      "that part" later in the discussion.

      Breaking into small groups and bringing it back to the larger group is a
      time-honored and effective facilitation technique. But if you're
      uncomfortable with it, by all means try it with the whole team. I think
      the most important part of this is generating explicit scenarios to
      illustrate the story. Doing so more efficiently is much less important.

      - George

      * George Dinwiddie * http://blog.gdinwiddie.com
      Software Development http://www.idiacomputing.com
      Consultant and Coach http://www.agilemaryland.org
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