January 24, 2013

Do it yourself daily scrum meeting.

The daily scrum meeting, as the name implies, is when the scrum team gathers once a day to review their progress compared to their commitments.
The meeting helps the team focus, and identify and eliminate impediments to their progress. The 15 minutes meeting takes place at the team task board.
Only team members can speak, to answer three critical questions:
·         What did I do yesterday?
·         What am I going to do today?
·         Is anything holding my progress?
The meeting structure and rules make things more efficient, and hold the team accountable for work done. At the bottom line, the daily scrum meeting gets things done.
The daily scrum meeting holds few characteristics that enables the above to happen in the most effective and efficient manner.
·         Why meet on a daily basis? As our objective is to have a self-managing Scrum team, we must provide the team with the proper tools. Keep in mind, that It isn’t just one person, rather many individuals that work together to achieve a common goal.  Gathering once a day makes sure all team members are all on the same page for today’s work. It also enables the team to detect problems early on (really early, usually a day old bug that is easily fixable), and deal with impediments.

·         The daily meeting is for the team. It isn’t for managers. Remember our objective is  to have a self-managed Scrum team? So they need a place and time to gather, and reflect over the sprint process. When we transfer the project micro management from the manager to the team, it means that the team is now responsible for managing, assigning, and delivering the tasks. So they need to have the proper tools to monitor the progress. The daily Scrum meeting is that time and place.

Meeting Settings:
·         The meeting has a 15 minute time limit, no matter how many people there are. This is a hard thing to achieve, and forces the team to conduct effective meetings to keep within this limit.
You don’t need more than 15 min to be effective. Short time frames have proven to be an effective tool to improve meetings efficiency and effectiveness.
·         The meeting is done standing up. Why? Because standing isn’t comfortable. Standing up means that that the meeting is kept short and scoped. When the team is mature enough and the meeting is effective, they usually switch to sitting down.
·         The team decides the time and place of the meeting. Not the managers
·         The meeting should be held at the same time and the same place every day. No changes. Of course, it is best to hold the meeting at the beginning of each day. The company HAS to respect the meeting time frame, and management should not force the team to change it.
·         The meeting must start on time.
·         The Scrum master facilitates the meeting.
·         Attendance is required. When a team member cannot attend, he is obligated to update his status to the team, either by updating another team member or by phoning through, email, instant message or Facebook update – there are enough ways to update your team today.
·         The team should gather around the task board, it’s where the action is.  
o   The task board represents the work (actual or future), and also acts as the team agenda. Don’t forget that the team should work according to the user story priority on the board.
o   The agenda is clear; business oriented and does not hold statements and irrelevant words that usually ruin meetings.
The meeting Flow:
·         Team members are expected to come prepared to the meeting. They shouldn’t start thinking and exploring their tasks during the daily meeting itself. It wastes everybody’s time.
·         Each team member answers 3 questions:
o   What did I do yesterday?
o   What am I going to do today? (according to user story priority)
o   Are there any impediments keeping me from progress?
·         Delays are also expected to be discussed and attended to. It is better to handle them when they are small.
·         The conversation is geared around the user stories on the board. Meaning, to the business.
o   For advanced teams, the scope of the daily meeting can be the same but instead of talking in a personal sense (‘what I did’ or ‘what am I going to do’), the team answer the questions as regards to a user story on the board. The scope shifts from a person to deliverable item, enhancing the probability of getting things done.
·         Team members are expected to listen and to share.
·         Speak in turn and don’t interrupt others while they talk.
·         Team members should keep their reporting effective, precise, business oriented and short (Didn’t say this was easy, did I? J)
·         Only one person talks at a time. Everyone else listens, and doesn’t hold any side conversations.
·         We do not go into great detail during the meeting. If the conversation starts getting into too much detail, the Scrum master should suggest that the team takes this issue offline. He is responsible for moving the meeting past the subject. Often a team member reports issues that need to be discussed further, or, since the team works together, tasks may be dependent on one another. In this case, the team should take the matter offline.
·         Action items are taken for after the meeting. They are clear and related to the business needs to be delivered.

A good daily meeting is one that is 15 minutes long, and creates discussions of various issues afterwards, to close open issues and remove impediments.

·         The communication flow goes through team members, not managers or the Scrum master.

·         Each team member should feel accountable for each other’s work. After all they need to deliver as a team. This means that when one team member is stuck or has an issue or problem, other team members needs to offer suggestions for assistance and decide who and how to remove the impediment.
·         The team is also expected to reflect over the quality of their work, as they are expected to deliver a quality outcome.
·         Towards the end of the meeting, the team should consider the entire sprint progress against their commitment. Identify common delays and suggest ways to deal with them.
·         Everyone is welcome to attend the daily meeting, but they should not speak until it ends.

o   They are chickens. People that have no tasks on the task board are not considered to be part of the team, and should be quiet. At the end of the meeting, ‘chickens‘ can ask questions and take things offline with team members.
o   Managers are ‘chickens’. They are not allowed to talk till the end of the meeting. The reason for this is, that the team is the one accountable for the delivery. Managers usually take the conversation to places familiar to them and to decision making as managers. The team needs to be able to make decisions by their own, therefore, to talk and communicate.

Do it yourself daily meeting:
o   Team members:  ____________ ____________ ____________ ____________
o   Scrum master (facilitator): ____________
o   Meeting schedule: ____________
o   Meeting flow:
o   For each team member :
o   What did I do yesterday (related to a user story on the board)
o   What am I going to do today? (related to a user story on the board according to the priority)
o   Is anything holding my progress ?
o   Entire team :
o   Review team progress.
o   Review team quality
o   What are our action items?
o   Deal immediately with Action items

References and further read:

No comments:

Post a Comment