In today's fast-paced business world, time has become more valuable than ever. Collaboration and communication are the cornerstones of successful teamwork, but traditional meetings and our old habits often pose challenges in effectively utilizing time. Studies such as https://hbr.org/2017/07/stop-the-meeting-madness indicate that the average employee has over 80 meetings per month. Unfortunately, only a small fraction of these meetings are productive, result-oriented, and motivating for participants, while the majority of them create extra chaos and steal productivity.
This intensive meeting agenda can also be a concern for Scrum teams, affecting their focus and motivation. However, perhaps the most significant challenge affecting Scrum teams is stakeholders missing Sprint Review events within the existing meeting chaos and being unable to provide timely feedback to the team. Often, stakeholders cannot attend real-time organized Sprint Review events due to other seemingly more important meetings, urgent matters from their managers, or simply the inability to organize their schedules for that day. Considering that Scrum relies on short sprints, value creation, and rapid feedback, teams struggling to receive feedback may face the risk of not delivering real value.
To overcome or at least alleviate this obstacle and receive timely feedback from stakeholders during Sprint Review, I would like to discuss two alternatives that we have recently experimented with, especially for remote teams.
Recorded Sprint Reviews: In teams where bringing all stakeholders together for real-time Sprint Review events is challenging, but stakeholders occasionally attend and contribute with their feedback, recording the whole Sprint Review and sharing it with stakeholders who couldn't attend can enhance inclusivity.
- It enables a Sprint Review event with high interaction among attending participants.
- Stakeholders who couldn't attend can still be informed about the progress, enhances transparency.
- Attendance might be impacted as participants rely on the availability of the recording.
- The length of the video recording and the lack of contextual discussion that occurred during the live event can hinder the impact of the video, thus affecting the quality of feedback.
Asynchronous Sprint Reviews: In situations where multiple stakeholders are involved, and participation is a challenge, opting for asynchronous meeting platforms like www.huudle.io, which I am also a part of, allows the Scrum Team to present their Increment through a short video recording and enables them to receive asynchronous feedback without missing any opportunities.
- It overcomes scheduling conflicts and enables active involvement of all stakeholders through the "show & tell" recording of the latest increment.
- Short and concise recordings facilitate the opportunity for quicker and valuable feedback.
- The asynchronous nature of video recordings may lead to missed moments where high interaction is required.
In summary, I appreciate real-time Sprint Reviews that foster high-level interactions and enable the entire team, along with stakeholders, to brainstorm together about the value they are striving to create. However, I also recognize the challenges associated with these meetings and the significance of exploring alternative methods to gather feedback and ensure that valuable opportunities are not missed.
What do you think? I would love to hear about your experiences and what you do to conduct effective Sprint Reviews and receive valuable feedback from stakeholders.