Member Articles

Enjoy our extensive collection of member-contributed articles to learn how other Scrum practitioners use Scrum in the workplace.

Read about the experiences and ideas of Agile colleagues around the world, and share your own thoughts here. You can also visit Spotlight, which features blogs by experts in the fields of Scrum, Agile, and the broader business world.

Opinions represent that of the author and not necessarily of Scrum Alliance. The sharing of member-contributed content on this site does not imply endorsement of specific Scrum methods or practices beyond those taught by Scrum Alliance Certified Trainers and Coaches.

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Bring the Customer Along

Bring the Customer Along

Recently I wrote an article with a rhetorical question for a title: “Are Customers Ready for Agile?” The idea stemmed from the fact that software development organizations have followed Waterfall methodology for so long that they h've ...

Maximizing the Value of Your Stand-up

Maximizing the Value of Your Stand-up

Over the last several years, I've been both a participant and a facilitator in many different stand-ups. As we know, the true value of the stand-up lies in the team's ability to continually strive toward the "commitment" for the current sprint cycle. The stand-up isn't a status report, yet often it becomes easy for team members to slip into a pattern of providing status-related information. I've used the time-honored stand-up approach for a while now, but I've often thought that a mature team could take these 15 minutes to a different level as it continues to evolve using Agile/Scrum.

How Scrum Is Changing the Global Delivery Model for Software Development

How Scrum Is Changing the Global Delivery Model for Software Development

We're all familiar with the Waterfall offshore paradigm of software development, in which clients and vendors engage in an asynchronous, sequential model for software development. The client spends money and time to develop a formal project charte...

An Argument for Comprehensive User Stories

An Argument for Comprehensive User Stories

As Scrum practitioners know, a user story is a high-level requirement of a feature, provided from the perspective of a stakeholder who desires the new capability. These requirements enable the development and testing team to think about a solution...

Yes, We're Doing Scrum

Yes, We're Doing Scrum

In July 2011, the Scrum Alliance website featured an article by Alan E. Cyment entitled "Compasses, Trees and Pains." It posed the question, "Am I doing Scrum or not?" Interestingly, one reader responded, '"Yeah, we're doing Scrum, but we have thr...

Back to Basics: Daily Scrum

Back to Basics: Daily Scrum

More than a decade ago I was programming as part of enterprise software teams, fairly well protected from everything not related to our planned deliverables. I had a lot of fun. But then I moved up to become an architect and team manager, and I g...

The Role of the Product Owner in Moving a Backlog Item to Done  (or, It's Not Over Until the Fat Lady Sings)

The Role of the Product Owner in Moving a Backlog Item to Done (or, It's Not Over Until the Fat Lady Sings)

Abstract: This article explores how to achieve the productivity benefits of an up-front enabling specification, given the reality that Scrum is an empirical framework in which emergent understanding of the story under development is inherent. I l...

The Value of a Business-Oriented Team

The Value of a Business-Oriented Team

More and more companies and organizations are enthusiastically adopting Agile, defining roles for each project, learning the practices, and entering the world of backlogs and burn-down charts.However, the theoretical simplicity of Scrum is often difficult to apply in real projects. Several organizational factors (assimilation of the methodology, resistance to change, organizational culture) can turn the trip into a nightmare. Luckily, there are ways to mitigate this problem.

Organizing a Scrum Conference When You're the Only Black Belt in Town

Organizing a Scrum Conference When You're the Only Black Belt in Town

For disclosure, I'll start by saying that even though I've practiced several martial arts, I've never achieved a black belt in any. However, I've trained in different Japanese martial arts with black belts who moved to my hometown for various reasons. They all wanted to continue practicing and teaching their martial arts; some of them found dojos to join while others needed to start from zero, attracting students and finding resources and a place to train.

"I Have No Impediments"

"I Have No Impediments"

"I have no impediments." It's the most common sign-off for every team member in the daily Scrum. It's also a lie. We've all been there. Standing in a little circle of people, listening to the carousel of "This is what I did yesterday, this is wh...

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