header image

Stick To The Rules (Come What May)


Agile Scrum Methodology

This tip is very closely related to starting with the scrum rules, but subtly different. Whereas that rule was about starting on the correct foundation, this rule is all about sticking to that foundation throughout thick and thin. It may seem as if simple rules are easy to stick to, but any experienced scrum practitioner will tell you that ‘simple to understand’ does not necessarily equal ‘easy to put into practice’.


Let us take the example of the daily scrum. I remember a situation in which, due to a number of factors, sprint planning took more than the recommended four hours for a two-week sprint. In keeping with scrum rules we time-boxed the meeting and decided to meet again the next day to complete the session. Since the second meeting was in the morning, the team questioned the need for a daily scrum meeting, especially since each of us knew what the other was doing the day before (planning) and what we were about to do (planning).



They actually became quite emotional and almost rebellious about the situation. As a scrum master, I had to remind them that the daily scrum was also a source of communication about issues. Live issues, blockers for planning, issues that had been communicated by email to certain members, absolutely anything. Therefore, this fifteen-minute stand-up meeting was probably more important after four hours of planning, since communication may have been missed since we had not discussed anything but planning for the previous day. If we had gone against the simple rule of having a daily scrum every day, we may have missed the opportunity to solve and communicate about an issue that would have delayed our sprint or release.



This is just a small example of how sticking to a very basic rule can have a very big impact on the performance of a team and I am sure that if you look through the scrum rules you can think of many other implications of missing out scrum rules. Therefore I would advise you to stick to the scrum rules and learn how to give reasonable explanations of why each scrum rule is so important.




for a collection of POWERFUL tips on how to create an effective scrum team see: Scrum Top Tips, For the Agile Scrum Master, Product Owner, Stakeholder and Development Team

for a COMPLETE OVERVIEW OF SCRUM see this cost effective MEGA EBOOK: Scrum, (Mega Pack), For the Agile Scrum Master, Product Owner, Stakeholder and Development Team


Got an opinion?