Agile Thinking

Ways That Scrum Implementation Fail

The scrum master, the product owner, and the development team are the triangle that makes scrum work. But more than just existing, each of these roles must also embody the right mindset. Without that, the implementation will still fail. In an article for AgileConnection, John Yorke examines the types of mindset disconnect that can occur.

Triangulating the Problem

It is possible for scrum masters to learn the rules of scrum without actually learning the principles that make those rules useful. Scrum masters who go “by the book” for its own sake will not be able to help their teams grow, especially since their teams will never develop a full understanding of scrum either. Similarly, problems arise when product owners listen to what stakeholders want but not why it is wanted. Or product owners do not see the significance of acquiring regular updates or identifying developing new needs. In the case of scrum master and product owner both, fundamental understanding is missing.

And about how development teams can falter, Yorke writes this:

There are many development teams that lack a production mindset and will over-architect, over-engineer, or merely pay lip service to quality, maintenance, or even design, all of which decrease the chances for team success. This will likely manifest itself in the team doing unnecessary or unimportant work to simply keep busy. Developers miss opportunities for delivering the right solution because they are busying themselves with work that has little value to the customer.

Yorke sees risk in the acting of bestowing official roles on people at all. When people are given specific roles, it may unconsciously narrow their range of focus to only include things that ostensibly apply to that role. The risk is increased when dealing with what should be a small, self-organizing team. Yorke thinks it might even be a good idea to abolish formal roles altogether in a highly competent cross-functional team, but that might be taking things too far.

You can view the original article here: https://www.agileconnection.com/article/reason-scrum-so-often-fails-agile-teams

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