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What are epics and features?

August 16, 2022
Epics and features are complementary Scrum practices that some Product Owners use to organize their Product Backlog. Like a folder structure, they are a convenient way to group PBIs into meaningful groups.

Meaning of Purpose

June 15, 2022
Scrum Guide 2020 mentions Sprint Goal and Product Goal because Scrum teams must have a Share Goal. The Share Goal is always essential, even though the Scrum Guide didn't say it before. Basically, the Common Goal helps the Scrum Team become consciously Autonomous. Because Autonomy will lead to chaos if the group doesn't have a Share Goal. (See picture below) In this article, I would like to share the problems the Scrum Team usually faces when setting their goals and making plans not to be unified or linked to achieving a Common Goal. Thereby, I share with everyone a compact tool that makes it easier for you to define the valuable Share Goals.

Guiding Teams in Multi-Skill Development

May 31, 2022
The work of solving a complex problem (for example, a feature) with interdependent tasks rarely distributes evenly among the people in a cross-functional team. The solution is a team of multi-skilled specialists. A team of multi-talented people experience fewer bottlenecks as they can help overloaded team members, and therefore reduce the time to solve a complex problem end-to-end. The team develops multi-skilled members by working in three preferred modes: pairing, mob-programming, and swarming continuously. Some other techniques are: StarMap, visualizing the flow of work, and Slack Time.
Blog Post

Characteristics of a Great Product Owner

April 25, 2022
The Scrum Guide doesn't provide a complete list of the skills required for any of the accountabilities on a Scrum Team. For example, it doesn't specify that Developers must use Java or C# code. The Scrum Guide simply states that Developers need all of the skills to deliver a Done increment of product each Sprint. We intuitively know that the skills required depend on the product. 
Blog Post

Refinement Myths

March 2, 2022
With the rapid increase in the adoption of Scrum and other Agile frameworks over the past several years, I’m not surprised that a few misconceptions and myths about Scrum have surfaced.  While many more organizations embrace Scrum, many individual practitioners have not undertaken formal training.  It’s the perfect environment for misinformation and confusion.
Blog Post

How the 12 principles in the Agile Manifesto work in real life

February 9, 2022
The Scrum framework comes with its own guardrails and values, but it is worth taking a moment to consider the base upon which Scrum is founded by examining the principles and values of the Agile Manifesto.  The Agile Manifesto includes four values and 12 principles that describe a better way to approach complex work.  In this article, we will discuss each of the 12 principles and what they mean in the real world.
Blog Post

The Scrum Values and the Real World

February 3, 2022
The 2020 Scrum Guide includes five values that are important to every successful implementation of Scrum.  These values are courage, commitment, focus, openness and respect. These values don’t get much attention, but the longer I practice Scrum and coach teams, the more important I find them.  This article will outline each value and provide examples of how they play out in the real world.
Blog Post

Motivational Debt — it will Fix itself, Right?

September 27, 2021
What drives you to achieve? Money? Promotion? Skill mastery? Whatever it is that motivates you, that’s okay — be thankful that you are motivated to move forwards. Without motivation in any form, you can personally and professionally stagnate to a point where you become a detractor in a team environment. This blog will explore how to avoid falling into that trap and some of the common dysfunctions it causes.
Blog Post

The value of incremental delivery in Scrum

August 9, 2021
When I first started practicing Scrum, I thought that delivering a done, usable increment each Sprint was the least important part of the framework (spoiler alert: delivering a done, usable increment at least once per Sprint is critically important for reducing risk, enabling faster delivery of business value, reducing the accumulation of technical debt, and facilitating empiricism.)  At the time, I was the Scrum Master for a team that was building an online application, and the Product Owner did not intend to release the new application to production until it was complete.  What did it matter how we sliced up the work when a certain amount of work had to get done either way? How wrong I was.
Blog Post

Can Scrum Work for Hard Deadlines?

July 6, 2021
If you’ve ever wondered whether Scrum can work for hard deadlines, the answer is – yes!  Not only can Scrum work in these situations, but in my experience, using this agile framework increases the probability of meeting challenging  deadlines.

Data-Informed Retrospectives

April 26, 2021
In their book Agile Retrospectives, Esther Derby and Diana Larsen popularized the idea that a Sprint Retrospect comprises five stages. The second stage refers to gathering data so that the Scrum Team can have data-informed Retrospectives.

PO Interview Questions — The Product Backlog and Refinement

April 19, 2021
If you are looking to fill a position for a Product Owner in your organization, you may find the following 71 interview questions useful to identify the right candidate. They are derived from my fourteen years of practical experience with XP and Scrum, serving both as Product Owner and Scrum Master and interviewing dozens of Product Owner candidates on behalf of my clients.