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Accentuate the positive?

Last post 02:30 pm November 15, 2013 by Shahine Ghanbarzadeh
2 replies
09:24 am November 15, 2013

Have I got this wrong?

Transparency is one of the 3 pillars of Scrum.
But does that mean you cannot accentuate the positive?
Does accentuating the positive indirectly mean you are obscuring the negatives?

As a ScrumMaster I advised my team, not to be bashful about their achievements when it came to the next sprint review. I did this in good faith at the time, but now I am wondering if I was wrong.

Did I inadvertently advise them not to be transparent?


10:02 am November 15, 2013

It is incorrect to accentuate the positive if, in so doing, the negative becomes obscured.

There is a particular danger for teams at an intermediate level of agile maturity. If they accentuate the positive to the exclusion of possible bad news, they are likely to end up providing "vanity metrics". The figures will be accurate, but they will be selected because they look good. This type of data is not very useful for making further improvements.

02:30 pm November 15, 2013

Thanks Ian.

I kind of knew what the answer was going to be, and I really like the phrase "Vanity Metrics".

Looks like more humble pie for me at the next gathering.


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