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RE: [scrumdevelopment] Scrum vs. PMI?

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  • Ken Schwaber
    Mark, I don t think Scrum or the teachings say that management is bad, since management responsibilities are delegated throughout Scrum to the ScrumMaster,
    Message 1 of 5 , Oct 30, 2003
      Mark,
      I don't think Scrum or the teachings say that management is bad, since management responsibilities are delegated throughout Scrum to the ScrumMaster, Team and Product Owner. Other parts of management have responsibilities, also, but these evolve in response to the opportunities offered by Scrum. The difficult of Scrum for many, managers and developers alike, is that it is not deterministic. Since so many management processes in most organizations are deterministic and they expect projects to be highly predictable, the collision with Scrum and the resultant resolution require all the skills we all have. The reasons that the effort and skills are worthwhile is that Scrum and other agile processes consistently work. The examples you provide of project successes is rousing, but statistically irrelevant in an industry where the majority of projects fail and the successes overdeliver functionality routinely.
       
      CMM and PMI are good frameworks and intentions. The deterministic implementations of them that have led people to believe that they can assert a plan or a process and then make it happen are the source of the problems. Life, and certainly software development, is much too complex for such a simplistic view.
      Ken Schwaber
      -----Original Message-----
      From: Mark McCain [mailto:xtremepm_2003@...]
      Sent: Sunday, October 26, 2003 1:44 AM
      To: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: [scrumdevelopment] Scrum vs. PMI?

      As a PM professional, I use the following methodologies on projects:
       
      - Waterfall - government contracts
      - Iterative - corporate contracts
      - RUP - corporate, large e-business and government contracts
      - Scrum - research projects, small e-business projects, small dev projects where the requirements are not well understood.
       
      Each of these methodolgies has its place.  PMBOK is not a methodology, nor does it claim to be.  The principles in Scrum are neither new (date back to the 70s) nor in conflict with the processes outlined in PMBOK.  PMI says scope is progressively elaborated throughout the lifecyle of the project.  Change is handled via a change management process, not so unlike the product backlog ( also a change management process).  The Stakeholders (like a product owner) decide what changes are implemented from the change log. Scrum is even more controlling as it pertains to scope because it PREVENTS change during a sprint.  PMI does not say to prevent change, but influence the factors that cause [e.g. poor coding, poor design, functional specs] change -- This point is often mis-interpeted.
       
      You shouldn't try to use a screwdriver when you need a hammer, nor should you try to use SCRUM on every project, it doesn't scale well, but great for small teams.
       
      This group seems to believe that management is unecessary and that PM's and Functional Managers should all be fired like Mildred the goose.  It is for this very ANTI-MANAGEMENT behavoir that makes it difficult for me to implement Scrum on a lot of my consulting engagements, where it would work very well.
       
      There are over 50,000 PMPs and there are barely 250 Scrum Masters.  So before WE start critizing PMI, we should look inward to see how we can improve Scrum instead of knocking time tested methodologies.  In any case, the people in your organization are the most important factor in project success not any single methodology.  If you believe that SCRUM is the antedote to everything you have truly drank the "COOLADE"
       
      Poor leadership as a developer, scrumaster, functional manager or PM results in bad morale and results. I've seen a lot more overtime with scrum, due to poor team leadership than under waterfall.  PMI recognizes the difference between leadership and management and strongly advocates that PM's provide leadership to its people and to manage product development (that doesn't mean to exert total control -- and any methodology can be used to manage a project, including scrum).    PMI says the creation of the WBS should be done by the team with the PM faciliating it -- sound familiar to Sprint Planning?   Scrum is much more controlling than the processes that PMI prescribes.  Never is anyone prevented from contributing to the project, where SCRUM has strict, controlling rules to ensure the team and no one else makes the decisions!
       
      I think we should spend more time critiquing ourselves and cleaning up our integrity and professional responsibility before knocking very successful methodologies that have built the pryamids, landed us on the moon, developed Unix and Windows and wonder drugs.  We should also look at why the Scrum Methodology prescribes excluding functional managers and PM's from contributing during the sprint.  They are often the most knowledgeable experts.  Surely there is a better way to do this than calling them chickens, perhaps WE are the chickens who can't deal with management.
       
      How can we get our management to care about us developers, if we don't respect their role and contributions.
       
      Having lead many projects using almost every imaginable methodology from scrum, rup and waterfall, I look forward to a lively discussion that will surely follow.
       
      Xtremely yours,
       
      Xtremepm_2003


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