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Re: Planning vs. Predicting

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  • Mary Poppendieck
    I agree 100% with Jeff s response to this note. I would like to add that the kind of commitments I was discussing were the team members commitment to each
    Message 1 of 21 , Oct 16, 2002
      I agree 100% with Jeff's response to this note.

      I would like to add that the kind of commitments I was discussing
      were the team members' commitment to each other to make the sprint
      goal. In construction, the weekly planning meeting is the forum
      where crew heads make commitments to each other. In Scrum, I would
      say the daily Scrum serves the same purpose.


      --- In scrumdevelopment@y..., "Pascal Roy" <pascal_roy_1967@h...>
      > Mary,
      > Right, in XP we use yesterday's weather (you are more likely to
      get done
      > this iteration the same amount of work as the previous iteration).
      Even so,
      > that doesn't take care of the initial commitment problem. Very
      > external commitments (the ones you can't break because you'll get
      sued or
      > worse) were made before a credible velocity can be established. In
      > cases, initial velocity guesstimates are optimistic and the team
      pays for
      > that dearly till the end of the project because they
      have "commited" (or
      > forced to commit?) to something they can't deliver and their
      success is
      > based on meeting that initial guesstimate commitment.There is this
      > floating around that somehow the original plan is "THE PLAN" by
      which the
      > success of the project should be measured against. People can't
      get past
      > that apparently. After being hammered for not conforming to "THE
      PLAN" ,
      > teams get smart: the next time they estimate, they lie and give
      estimates so
      > big they can be sure to make it. In theory, that could work.
      > because people aren't generally stupid, they usually figure out
      they are
      > being lied to and then trust, if there was any already, just
      > creating what I would call a fun and very productive place to work
      at... The
      > practice of buffering estimates to me is just a symptom of the
      fear we have
      > of this commitment and is just another way of covering our asses.
      It just
      > adds another level of complexity to the problem by introducing
      yet another
      > variable into the mix as if there weren't enough unknowns already.
      I don't
      > see a win/win situation in there. It feels more like people are
      playing not
      > to loose...
      > I'm really not advocating having no commitment at all (for obvious
      > reasons but also for team motivation). I'm just trying to figure
      out how to
      > commit in a way that does not push team members (business,
      > developers) to become at odds with each other as soon as things
      don't go as
      > originally planned and more critically when the hard decisions
      need to be
      > taken. Any ideas on how to deal with initial external commitments?
      > Pascal Roy
      > Object Mentor Inc.
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