July 29, 2020

Focus on Steps, not Leaps

We often try to make massive change once we realize something isn't right and this doesn't normally go so well. When it comes to making progress everyone wants to LEAP; take BIGGER steps.

The bigger the improvement, the happier we are. But it doesn't work like that in reality.

Yes, it would be :

  • Great to run 10 kms in 35 mins, every time you get out to run.
  • Awesome to beat that goal of sub 4 hour marathon(42.2 kms) with just few months of training.
  • Inspiring to squat > 70% of our body weight, every time you walk into the gym.
  • Lovely to lose that fat ( due to years and years of lack of activity and junk eating) in just few weeks.

But the risk is, such leaps rarely occur. Many times, we lose the plot constantly looking for such giant leaps. And when these leaps doesn't happen, in the way we want - we lose heart and give up !

What many times, we don't realize is that by trying to make massive changes, we are disrupting the balance in our life and that will make it harder to be consistent.

These leaps may sound exciting, fascinating and sexy. But the truth is, these leaps aren't available to everyone?

Tiny steps are..................................Small improvements are..........................................................

Tiny steps are available to everyone, at all points of time. Focus on taking one step at a time.

Just a small baby step. Go for it. Then take the next baby step. The focus is on keeping it " small and consistent".

They may not be path breaking or fashionable. But they are simple and are there for the taking. So don't miss them.

Take them ! As tiny as they can be, take them as often as you can. Take them as frequently as you can.

It is these tiny steps that will add up to the leap you've always been looking for.

These small, tiny, incremental improvements comes in various forms and sizes. Take them. In the long run, they act as the force multipliers for the frog-leap transformations.

Scrum presents you with a lot of opportunities to focus on such small, tiny improvements:

  1. Every Daily Scrum is an infinitesimal step : to re-commit to the Sprint Goal, filter out the noise and keep the Development Team focused on the high priority work. 
    • It's a microscopic opportunity to re-plan and collaborate on " What's the most important thing we as a Development Team need to accomplish today"?
  2. In the Sprint Retrospective take that tiny step to slowly expand the Scrum Team's capabilities in-terms of : Definition Of Done, the engineering quality practices, limiting the work in progress, team collaboration, trust, transparency, shared accountability of work and team spirit.
  3. In the Sprint Review, take that minuscule step to tap into the stakeholders feedback, inspect the Done functionality and raise the transparency on the release progress and focus for the upcoming Sprint.
  4. In the Sprint Planning, take that baby step to create a meaningful Sprint Goal, that unites the Scrum Team with a singular objective. You won't get to one synergistic Sprint Goal the first time. That's okay, keep at it. Improve in the successive Sprints.
  5. Take that minimal step to spend time collaboratively as a Scrum Team to refine, review, re-order, discuss, decompose & delete the Product Backlog items during the Sprint, in every Sprint; consistently.

Don't miss these micro steps that Scrum offers. Latch on to them firmly. Commit to those small incremental improvements. Get them done in the Sprint.

These pave the way for the solid transformations like : valuable high quality Done Increments, maximizing the value delivery, better stakeholder engagement, responding to changing demand and enabling business agility! 

Until next time, sweat it out, rinse, recover and repeat !

#MakeFitnessAHabit  #1repatatime #ScrumOn

Inspiration, Credits and References:

  • Co-founder and Coach, Raj Ganpath and Arvind Ashok ,@thequad.in,The Quad Fitness Pvt. Limited, Madras, India