Sample Exam answer (wrong imo)

Last post 09:58 am August 14, 2014
by Anke Maerz
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06:27 am June 13, 2014

Hi all,
I'm preparing for the PSM1, so I also took a look on the The Scrum Master Training Manual from mgmtplaza.com. At the end of the "manual" they have 2 sample exams, with 20 questions each. Besides the visible errors (the question is about the Sprint Review and the answer is about the Sprint Retrospective) I found this controversial question / answer:

"What happens to the definition of “Done” when multiple Development Teams are working on a single project?
A. Each team defines its own “Done”, and communicates it with others so that everyone knows what it means when a team claims that they are Done with something
B. Each team defines its own “Done”, in a way that the integration of their work results in a definition of “Done” that is potentially releasable
C. They all use the same definition of “Done”
D. Any of the above answers, based on the nature of the project and the environment of the organization"

The correct answer in their opinion is B, while I marked C. Their explanation is:

"We should always have Increments of potentially shippable product, even when multiple teams are working on a single project. In this case, a single definition of “Done” might not be suitable for all teams, but the integration of their definitions should result in an overall definition of “Done” that is potentially shippable."

I’m curious about an expert opinion on this, since the Scrum Guide mentions:
"If there are multiple Scrum Teams working on the system or product release, the development teams on all of the Scrum Teams must mutually define the definition of “Done.”

09:38 am June 13, 2014

Yeah I also found a few of those ... the plus side is you've studied enough to be able to spot wrong answers.

01:22 pm June 13, 2014

I think that they're right. First of all Scrum Guide also mentions that Scrum Team must have their DoD defined. Now, think of two teams working on the same project and having big difference of Scrum expirience between (or working on completely different areas). The team with more experience will have quite a demanding DoD that would completely paralise work of the other team that needs some time to grow into a Scrum Development Team. On the other hand, both increments produced must be potentially releasable, so common DoD (that will change as the less experienced team grows) is needed. In other words: DoD may be completely common for all teams but it doesn't have to.

02:55 pm June 13, 2014

The Scrum Master training manual is a poor source of preparation for PSM 1, due to the numerous errors and misunderstandings about Scrum.

Their use of the term "project" here is also erroneous.

01:55 am June 14, 2014

Do they mean project or product? If they mean multiple teams working on the same *product* - then all teams must have the same understanding of DoD.

02:38 pm July 14, 2014

I definitely agree with mattdaniels, because in my opinion the key is that a project and a product are two different things. The Scrum Guide says the paragraph:

"If there are multiple Scrum Teams working on the system or product release, the development teams on all of the Scrum Teams must mutually define the definition of “Done.”

Wich is in terms of a product. But in the question:

"What happens to the definition of “Done” when multiple Development Teams are working on a single project?"

They are talking about a project, and a project contains the development of a product increment and other activities beyond development, then maybe the answer B) fits better:

"Each team defines its own “Done”, in a way that the integration of their work results in a definition of “Done” that is potentially releasable"

I also would like a more in-depth discussion with some expert in Scrum.org , because that is a tricky question in some way.

04:12 pm July 14, 2014

In Scrum the focus is on delivering a product rather than a project. That's one of the reasons why the framework has a Product Owner role and not a Project Manager.

Sometimes we may talk loosely about a project, but it is not strictly correct to do so. Note that in Scrum the delivery of a product can actually refer to the delivery of a service as well.

09:53 am August 14, 2014

To all who said the question is poorly worded or the stated answer is wrong: I had almost the same question in the Open Assessment: "When many Teams are working on a single product, what best describes the definition of "done"?"

And there they said, too: Correct answer is C) All Development Teams must have a definition of "done" that makes their combined work potentially releasable.

I think, with multiple Development Teams, one should have the Scrum of Scrums in mind. In a large product it is not reasonable to assume that all Sub-Teams have the similar Sprint Goals justifying a shared Definition of Done - like Pawel has already said before.

09:58 am August 14, 2014

Addendum:

of course you all are right, in saying a project is different from a product - so the question IS poorly worded.

I just wanted to emphasize the emergence of this very similar question in the Open Assessment.