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Re: [scrumdevelopment] Where to start?

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  • Jack Milunsky
    I would definitely start with small steps. Try get a Scrum Coach in if you can. That will help you enormously. But getting started with the Backlog is a good
    Message 1 of 21 , Feb 1, 2012
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      I would definitely start with small steps. Try get a Scrum Coach in if you can. That will help you enormously.

      But getting started with the Backlog is a good place to start. Since all work emanates from the Backlog. 

      I have always believed that a well groomed backlog is the best way to get started. 

      But again, what i would do is get the Stories in, as best you can. Perhaps they're even just epics. Identify your highest priority highest value epics and start to break just those down. Don't try to get the entire backlog done in one go that's wasteful. Just do enough to get the team going 1.5. to 2 Scrums worth.

      Next get a scrum board going. Get all your story and tasks onto the scrum board and get the teams to meet in front of the scrum board every day for 15 minutes. Make sure each one is prepared to discuss their tasks/stories. 

      Get them to watch Kens Google Tech Talk during a lunch and learn. THey'll love it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IyNPeTn8fpo

      The rest will follow with your guidance.

      Hope this helps

      Jack 
      www.agilebuddy.com

      On Wed, Feb 1, 2012 at 2:29 PM, frede_swe <fredrik.vestin@...> wrote:
       

      Hi all,


      Our current development process can best be described as iterative waterfall. We don't have a clear definition of done, stories are spilled over from one sprint to another, team is not self-organizing, technical skill of developers vary greatly etc. I can easily identify twenty more or less serious issues that need to be addressed for our process to improve. Question is, where do I start? Should I go with a big bang approach or just make small improvements as we go along? If I start with small improvements, what should I start with? backlog, developers skill level or what do you suggest?

      Thanks
      Fredrik





      --
      Jack Milunsky
      Agilebuddy.com

      Cell: +1.416.302.5937
      E-mail: jack@...
      Web Site: www.agilebuddy.com
      Blog: blog.agilebuddy.com
      Twitter: twitter.com/agilebuddy

    • Steve Ropa
      These are all great suggestions. I would however like to put in a plug for programmers (and other developers ) technical practices as well. I worry sometimes
      Message 2 of 21 , Feb 2, 2012
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        These are all great suggestions.  I would however like to put in a plug for programmers’(and other developers’) technical practices as well.  I worry sometimes that we get so caught up in the project management side of Scrum that we forget those.    It is very hard to support the kind of environment that can do things in small chunks, and embraces change, if the team is still programming large unwieldy, tightly coupled modules.

         

        So I would echo Jack here, “start with small steps” but I would make sure to mix technical practices in with the other backlog management pieces. 

         

         

        Steve

         

        From: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com [mailto:scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Jack Milunsky
        Sent: Wednesday, February 01, 2012 8:05 PM
        To: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: Re: [scrumdevelopment] Where to start?

         

         

        I would definitely start with small steps. Try get a Scrum Coach in if you can. That will help you enormously.

         

        But getting started with the Backlog is a good place to start. Since all work emanates from the Backlog. 

         

        I have always believed that a well groomed backlog is the best way to get started. 

         

        But again, what i would do is get the Stories in, as best you can. Perhaps they're even just epics. Identify your highest priority highest value epics and start to break just those down. Don't try to get the entire backlog done in one go that's wasteful. Just do enough to get the team going 1.5. to 2 Scrums worth.

         

        Next get a scrum board going. Get all your story and tasks onto the scrum board and get the teams to meet in front of the scrum board every day for 15 minutes. Make sure each one is prepared to discuss their tasks/stories. 

         

        Get them to watch Kens Google Tech Talk during a lunch and learn. THey'll love it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IyNPeTn8fpo

         

        The rest will follow with your guidance.

         

        Hope this helps

         

        Jack 

        www.agilebuddy.com

        On Wed, Feb 1, 2012 at 2:29 PM, frede_swe <fredrik.vestin@...> wrote:

         

        Hi all,

         

        Our current development process can best be described as iterative waterfall. We don't have a clear definition of done, stories are spilled over from one sprint to another, team is not self-organizing, technical skill of developers vary greatly etc. I can easily identify twenty more or less serious issues that need to be addressed for our process to improve. Question is, where do I start? Should I go with a big bang approach or just make small improvements as we go along? If I start with small improvements, what should I start with? backlog, developers skill level or what do you suggest?

         

        Thanks

        Fredrik

         

         



         

        --
        Jack Milunsky
        Agilebuddy.com

        Cell: +1.416.302.5937
        E-mail: jack@...
        Web Site: www.agilebuddy.com
        Blog: blog.agilebuddy.com
        Twitter: twitter.com/agilebuddy

      • JackM
        Yes I d agree with that Steve. Additionally, if you pick up Mike Cohn s latest book. I read it a while ago, it discusses ways to best transition organizations
        Message 3 of 21 , Feb 2, 2012
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          Yes I'd agree with that Steve.

          Additionally, if you pick up Mike Cohn's latest book. I read it a while ago, it discusses ways to best transition organizations depending on different scenarios

          Cheers
          Jack
          www.agilebuddy.com

          --- In scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com, "Steve Ropa" <theropas@...> wrote:
          >
          > These are all great suggestions. I would however like to put in a plug for
          > programmers'(and other developers') technical practices as well. I worry
          > sometimes that we get so caught up in the project management side of Scrum
          > that we forget those. It is very hard to support the kind of environment
          > that can do things in small chunks, and embraces change, if the team is
          > still programming large unwieldy, tightly coupled modules.
          >
          >
          >
          > So I would echo Jack here, "start with small steps" but I would make sure to
          > mix technical practices in with the other backlog management pieces.
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > Steve
          >
          >
          >
          > From: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com
          > [mailto:scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Jack Milunsky
          > Sent: Wednesday, February 01, 2012 8:05 PM
          > To: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com
          > Subject: Re: [scrumdevelopment] Where to start?
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > I would definitely start with small steps. Try get a Scrum Coach in if you
          > can. That will help you enormously.
          >
          >
          >
          > But getting started with the Backlog is a good place to start. Since all
          > work emanates from the Backlog.
          >
          >
          >
          > I have always believed that a well groomed backlog is the best way to get
          > started.
          >
          >
          >
          > But again, what i would do is get the Stories in, as best you can. Perhaps
          > they're even just epics. Identify your highest priority highest value epics
          > and start to break just those down. Don't try to get the entire backlog done
          > in one go that's wasteful. Just do enough to get the team going 1.5. to 2
          > Scrums worth.
          >
          >
          >
          > Next get a scrum board going. Get all your story and tasks onto the scrum
          > board and get the teams to meet in front of the scrum board every day for 15
          > minutes. Make sure each one is prepared to discuss their tasks/stories.
          >
          >
          >
          > Get them to watch Kens Google Tech Talk during a lunch and learn. THey'll
          > love it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IyNPeTn8fpo
          >
          >
          >
          > The rest will follow with your guidance.
          >
          >
          >
          > Hope this helps
          >
          >
          >
          > Jack
          >
          > www.agilebuddy.com
          >
          > On Wed, Feb 1, 2012 at 2:29 PM, frede_swe <fredrik.vestin@...> wrote:
          >
          >
          >
          > Hi all,
          >
          >
          >
          > Our current development process can best be described as iterative
          > waterfall. We don't have a clear definition of done, stories are spilled
          > over from one sprint to another, team is not self-organizing, technical
          > skill of developers vary greatly etc. I can easily identify twenty more or
          > less serious issues that need to be addressed for our process to improve.
          > Question is, where do I start? Should I go with a big bang approach or just
          > make small improvements as we go along? If I start with small improvements,
          > what should I start with? backlog, developers skill level or what do you
          > suggest?
          >
          >
          >
          > Thanks
          >
          > Fredrik
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > --
          > Jack Milunsky
          > Agilebuddy.com
          >
          > Cell: +1.416.302.5937
          > E-mail: jack@...
          > Web Site: www.agilebuddy.com
          > Blog: blog.agilebuddy.com
          > Twitter: twitter.com/agilebuddy
          >
        • Bret Wortman
          I d also recommend Becoming Agile for some good information on transitioning an organization to agile. *Bret Wortman***
          Message 4 of 21 , Feb 3, 2012
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            I'd also recommend "Becoming Agile" for some good information on transitioning an organization to agile.


            Bret Wortman



            On Thu, Feb 2, 2012 at 8:35 PM, JackM <jack@...> wrote:
             

            Yes I'd agree with that Steve.

            Additionally, if you pick up Mike Cohn's latest book. I read it a while ago, it discusses ways to best transition organizations depending on different scenarios

            Cheers
            Jack
            www.agilebuddy.com



            --- In scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com, "Steve Ropa" <theropas@...> wrote:
            >
            > These are all great suggestions. I would however like to put in a plug for
            > programmers'(and other developers') technical practices as well. I worry
            > sometimes that we get so caught up in the project management side of Scrum
            > that we forget those. It is very hard to support the kind of environment
            > that can do things in small chunks, and embraces change, if the team is
            > still programming large unwieldy, tightly coupled modules.
            >
            >
            >
            > So I would echo Jack here, "start with small steps" but I would make sure to
            > mix technical practices in with the other backlog management pieces.
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            > Steve
            >
            >
            >
            > From: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com
            > [mailto:scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Jack Milunsky
            > Sent: Wednesday, February 01, 2012 8:05 PM
            > To: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com
            > Subject: Re: [scrumdevelopment] Where to start?
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            > I would definitely start with small steps. Try get a Scrum Coach in if you
            > can. That will help you enormously.
            >
            >
            >
            > But getting started with the Backlog is a good place to start. Since all
            > work emanates from the Backlog.
            >
            >
            >
            > I have always believed that a well groomed backlog is the best way to get
            > started.
            >
            >
            >
            > But again, what i would do is get the Stories in, as best you can. Perhaps
            > they're even just epics. Identify your highest priority highest value epics
            > and start to break just those down. Don't try to get the entire backlog done
            > in one go that's wasteful. Just do enough to get the team going 1.5. to 2
            > Scrums worth.
            >
            >
            >
            > Next get a scrum board going. Get all your story and tasks onto the scrum
            > board and get the teams to meet in front of the scrum board every day for 15
            > minutes. Make sure each one is prepared to discuss their tasks/stories.
            >
            >
            >
            > Get them to watch Kens Google Tech Talk during a lunch and learn. THey'll
            > love it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IyNPeTn8fpo
            >
            >
            >
            > The rest will follow with your guidance.
            >
            >
            >
            > Hope this helps
            >
            >
            >
            > Jack
            >
            > www.agilebuddy.com
            >
            > On Wed, Feb 1, 2012 at 2:29 PM, frede_swe <fredrik.vestin@...> wrote:
            >
            >
            >
            > Hi all,
            >
            >
            >
            > Our current development process can best be described as iterative
            > waterfall. We don't have a clear definition of done, stories are spilled
            > over from one sprint to another, team is not self-organizing, technical
            > skill of developers vary greatly etc. I can easily identify twenty more or
            > less serious issues that need to be addressed for our process to improve.
            > Question is, where do I start? Should I go with a big bang approach or just
            > make small improvements as we go along? If I start with small improvements,
            > what should I start with? backlog, developers skill level or what do you
            > suggest?
            >
            >
            >
            > Thanks
            >
            > Fredrik
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            > --
            > Jack Milunsky
            > Agilebuddy.com
            >
            > Cell: +1.416.302.5937
            > E-mail: jack@...


          • frede_swe
            Hi Steve, I think you re 100% right and that will no doubt be one of our greatest challenges and it will take time to implement them. Is there any reason why
            Message 5 of 21 , Feb 3, 2012
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              Hi Steve,

              I think you're 100% right and that will no doubt be one of our greatest
              challenges and it will take time to implement them.
              Is there any reason why good technical practices are not in the scrum
              guide? I can't see how Scrum team could be successful without them.

              /Fredrik

              --- In scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com, "Steve Ropa" <theropas@...>
              wrote:
              >
              > These are all great suggestions. I would however like to put in a
              plug for
              > programmers'(and other developers') technical practices as well. I
              worry
              > sometimes that we get so caught up in the project management side of
              Scrum
              > that we forget those. It is very hard to support the kind of
              environment
              > that can do things in small chunks, and embraces change, if the team
              is
              > still programming large unwieldy, tightly coupled modules.
              >
              >
              >
              > So I would echo Jack here, "start with small steps" but I would make
              sure to
              > mix technical practices in with the other backlog management pieces.
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              > Steve
            • frede_swe
              Hi Jack, Are you referring to succeding with agile... (already on my bedtable) or another book? /Fredrik ... while ago, it discusses ways to best transition
              Message 6 of 21 , Feb 3, 2012
              • 0 Attachment
                Hi Jack,

                Are you referring to "succeding with agile..." (already on my bedtable)
                or another book?

                /Fredrik

                --- In scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com, "JackM" <jack@...> wrote:
                >
                > Yes I'd agree with that Steve.
                >
                > Additionally, if you pick up Mike Cohn's latest book. I read it a
                while ago, it discusses ways to best transition organizations depending
                on different scenarios
                >
                > Cheers
                > Jack
                > www.agilebuddy.com
              • frede_swe
                I discussed this with an agile coach/trainer today who encouraged me to start with a Scrum training for the entire team, or even the entire company. He
                Message 7 of 21 , Feb 3, 2012
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                  I discussed this with an agile coach/trainer today who encouraged me to start with a Scrum training for the entire team, or even the entire company. He recommended "Scrum Foundations" or similar.

                  His point was that although it's possible to implement Scrum by having a Scrummaster learning first and then educating other team members etc. the risk is that other members will not fully understand the underlying values and principles. When/if the Scrum master leaves everyone would go back to their old behavior.

                  /Fredrik

                  --- In scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com, "frede_swe" <fredrik.vestin@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > Hi all,
                  > Our current development process can best be described as iterative
                  > waterfall. We don't have a clear definition of done, stories are spilled
                  > over from one sprint to another, team is not self-organizing, technical
                  > skill of developers vary greatly etc. I can easily identify twenty more
                  > or less serious issues that need to be addressed for our process to
                  > improve. Question is, where do I start? Should I go with a big bang
                  > approach or just make small improvements as we go along? If I start with
                  > small improvements, what should I start with? backlog, developers skill
                  > level or what do you suggest?
                  > ThanksFredrik
                  >
                • RonJeffries
                  Hi Frede, ... Yes. Scrum is intended to be a framework for new products, not just software. And it is intended to be kind of a minimal framework. And it
                  Message 8 of 21 , Feb 3, 2012
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                    Hi Frede,

                    On Feb 3, 2012, at 10:21 AM, frede_swe wrote:

                    Is there any reason why good technical practices are not in the scrum
                    guide? I can't see how Scrum team could be successful without them.

                    Yes. Scrum is intended to be a framework for new products, not just software. And it is intended to be kind of a "minimal" framework. And it assumes people can think and figure things out. So it leaves out things like that.

                    Ron Jeffries
                    www.XProgramming.com
                    Everything that needs to be said has already been said.
                    But since no one was listening, everything must be said again. -- Andre Gide

                  • tim_s_wise
                    Hi Fredrik, Your comment is somewhat where I m headed with my advice. I think all of the information you ve been given so far is solid advice. I would add one
                    Message 9 of 21 , Feb 6, 2012
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                      Hi Fredrik,

                      Your comment is somewhat where I'm headed with my advice.

                      I think all of the information you've been given so far is solid advice. I would add one piece to it. I encourage you to find a scrum coach experienced in multiple organization and team transitions to scrum and make them a mentor for you. However, I encourage you to not make your situation "vanilla" to them. Don't expect one size fits all answer to how to introduce scrum. Do expect to get in the trenches and have lots of discussions. Get someone you trust and honestly talk through what the organization needs, the methods you are trying, and get their advice on where to start. Personally, I've started with the technology side at times, the backlog side other times, and the organization itself for other times. To me, how I approach implementing the framework depends on a lot of factors and no one implementation is ever the same.

                      Best of luck,

                      Tim

                      --- In scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com, "frede_swe" <fredrik.vestin@...> wrote:
                      >
                      > I discussed this with an agile coach/trainer today who encouraged me to start with a Scrum training for the entire team, or even the entire company. He recommended "Scrum Foundations" or similar.
                      >
                      > His point was that although it's possible to implement Scrum by having a Scrummaster learning first and then educating other team members etc. the risk is that other members will not fully understand the underlying values and principles. When/if the Scrum master leaves everyone would go back to their old behavior.
                      >
                      > /Fredrik
                      >
                      > --- In scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com, "frede_swe" <fredrik.vestin@> wrote:
                      > >
                      > > Hi all,
                      > > Our current development process can best be described as iterative
                      > > waterfall. We don't have a clear definition of done, stories are spilled
                      > > over from one sprint to another, team is not self-organizing, technical
                      > > skill of developers vary greatly etc. I can easily identify twenty more
                      > > or less serious issues that need to be addressed for our process to
                      > > improve. Question is, where do I start? Should I go with a big bang
                      > > approach or just make small improvements as we go along? If I start with
                      > > small improvements, what should I start with? backlog, developers skill
                      > > level or what do you suggest?
                      > > ThanksFredrik
                      > >
                      >
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