Content over tools
I thought I would write a small thing that I learnt that really helped my Scrum Team. Like many teams we use Jira, and our Daily Scrum became an exercise where the teams would just move items from one column to another without really using it as an opportunity to inspect and adapt.
We (the Scrum Team) decided in the Retrospective, to run a test and have the Daily Scrum without using the Jira board, and so far it has absolutely worked, as the conversation has focussed on what the Development Team thinks are the important areas of discussion instead of a box ticking exercise of Product Backlog Item finished or not.
I know it is a small thing, but as we say in the UK, look after the pennies, and the pounds will look after you.
Using a Daily Scrum to "catch up" with board updates is arguably an anti-pattern. It implies that prior to this event, the board was not telling the truth. One of the steps in gaining agile maturity can be transitioning to what teams sometimes refer to as a "live" board, which is really just one that is updated collaboratively throughout the day. This can initially lead to uncertainty...team members may wonder, "what is the purpose of the Daily Scrum if it isn't to update a board?" There is then a coaching opportunity to refocus each Daily Scrum on forward planning and on meeting the Sprint Goal.
Live board is where we are at now, but to be honest the team sees the Daily Scrum as even more useful now as it can focus on the Sprint Goal (as you said), but also on removing impediments and reducing dependancies within the team.
It is a small thing, but has had a really good affect.
Good stuff, Stephen, awesome that you share your improvement experience with the community!
We are all inspecting and adapting here. As I said before, sometimes little things have a big impact. Add all those little things up, and they make to a big change!