Implementing Scrum using Scrum

ScrumA couple of years ago I was the evangelist for using scrum as the product development method at my employer at that time. I remember very well that I needed to convince the management team in the product organization to make changes in the way we developed products. It started with sharing existing videos as Agile vs. Waterfall :a Tale of Two Teams and presentations on Agile Software development (Isn't it nice you easily you can recall recent history based on YouTube and SlideShare favorites). Of course there was the usual hesitation and fear for change but nothing out of the ordinary. Eventually as a team the conclusion was that scrum would help us further and would be the right approach to become more agile and deliver more customer value. Many of you will probably recognize simular kind of discussions and decision making.

The real discussion actually started with the plan for implementation. There were soon two distinct camps, the first group wanted to do a good preparation, bring policies up to par and do an extensive training program for the people involved and roll out a gradual implementation over the various teams. Sounds like a solid and well prepared plan for implementation. The second group had a completely different view and was in favor for a 'lets just do it' approach. We know we want to roll out scrum, so lets start today and use the retrospective of scrum to improve the process sprint by sprint. To many the last approach looks irresponsible and a dive into the deep end of the pool without knowing if the people can swim. In a way that is right, however the first approach isn't very agile and takes a very waterfall approach with policies and training that needs to be implemented first.

My take on this is the following: Scrum should first and fore most be a strategic choice! It's not about your development process, but it's how your complete organization should be agile with focus on fast delivery of customer value. The strategic choice implies that agile should be part of the DNA of your organization and you should start to show this immediately. Since you did make the strategic choice, there is no reason of holding back and you should dive into it immediately. However this doesn't mean you should take unnecessary risks and therefor my advice is to have a small team dive into the deep end. Just remember your work with professionals and they would be very motivated to be an example of the rest of the company. Depending on the knowledge and experience in your organization it might also want to consider some external coaching and advise. In most case it will be well spent money if you get highly energized teams in return.

Not sure yet what your should do? Have a look at some scrum energized teams I worked with:

If you know more movies of inspired teams, leave them in the comments below.


... and finally if you understand Dutch and still want to learn more on scrum follow the vlogs of Rini van Solingen

Image: Nigel Robertson

2 comments

Thiruppathyraja

Really well done for the blog.these are so sweet and pretty!
Scrum Process

sashastri Chennai

interesting blog. It would be great if you can provide more details about it. Thanks you

Scrum Process

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