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What has NOT changed in the game of Scrum?

December 7, 2020
This is part #42 of 59 in the series Scrum Guide 2020 Updates

The 2020 version of Scrum Guide was released recently and everyone is talking about the changes been made in it and how it is going to impact their current ways of working as compared to its previous version. Social media is full of great discussions about Scrum Guide 2020. I have also read the Scrum Guide 2020 and have noticed a few changes but I am happy to see that no change has been made in the key elements and core of Scrum and the pillars of Scrum are kept intact. We had a meetup with other Scrum practitioners and the theme of the discussion was “What has NOT changed in Scrum”. We discussed the following elements of Scrum which has not changed -

  1. Scrum is still a framework and purposefully incomplete so that its practitioners can apply various processes, techniques and methods as per their context without changing the rules of the game
  2. Changing the core design or ideas of Scrum, leaving out elements, or not following the rules of Scrum, still covers up problems and limits the benefits of Scrum, potentially even rendering it useless.
  3. Scrum still employs the iterative and incremental approach in an empirical way and is built upon the pillars of Inspection, Adaptation, and Transparency
  4. Successful use of Scrum still depends on its practitioners living the five values - Commitment, Focus, Openness, Respect, and Courage
  5. The Scrum Team’s Definition of Done still helps in ensuring transparency and defining the Increment

Scrum Team

  1. The Product Owner is still accountable for maximizing the value of the product resulting from the work of the Scrum Team
  2. The Product Owner is still one person and not a committee.
  3. The Scrum Master is still accountable for ensuring the correct implementation of Scrum
  4. The Scrum Master is still accountable for removing the impediments
  5. Within a Scrum Team, there are still no sub-teams or hierarchy and it should be cross-functional


  1. The Scrum Events are still timeboxed and the Product Owner still has the final authority of canceling a Sprint
  2. The Sprint Planning is still a collaborative event for the entire Scrum Team and the expected outcome is still the Sprint Goal, the selected Product Backlog Items and a plan for delivering them referred to as the Sprint Backlog
  3. The purpose of Daily Scrum is still to inspect the progress towards the Sprint Goal and adapt the Sprint Backlog as necessary.
  4. The Sprint Review is still a collaboration event between the Scrum Team and the stakeholders to inspect what was accomplished in the Sprint and what has changed in their environment, what to do next.
  5.  The Sprint Retrospective is still used by the Scrum Team to inspect how the last Sprint went with regards to individuals, interactions, processes, tools, and their Definition of Done.


  1. One Product still has one Product Backlog and it is still the single source of work undertaken by the Scrum Team
  2. The Product Backlog is still emergent, ordered list of what is needed to improve the product.
  3. The Sprint Backlog is still the composition of Sprint Goal, the set of Product Backlog Items selected for the Sprint, and an actionable plan for delivering the Increment.
  4. The Sprint Backlog still emerges throughout the Sprint as more is learned.
  5. An Increment is still an expected outcome from a Sprint and can be delivered to stakeholders prior to the end of the Sprint

We agreed that there are a few changes but there is so much which remains intact.

How are you looking at the new Scrum Guide 2020? Are you concerned about the changes? Are the changes going to impact the way you were doing Scrum?


Photo by Olga Guryanova on Unsplash

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