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For Better Scrums: A Scrum Book Review

For Better Scrums: A Scrum Book Review is mostly made up of book extracts and summary notes I made while learning and researching Scrum. I believe It’s good practice to make notes while learning or researching something new.

In fact, this article partly being a book view article is inspired by audiobooks: scrum: The Art of Doing Twice the Work in Half the TimeJeff Sutherland and The Scrum Guide-November 2020: A Definitive Guide to Scrum by Ken Schwaber and Jeff Sutherland.

I decided to write this Scrum book review because not only does It helps to know how beneficial & useful this framework is for efficient and even better Scrums. But also how it can influence any sector and accelerate every human endeavour or organisation objectives.

The other books I think will be helpful to Software Developers, Project Managers, Product Managers and other People in the Technology space are  The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses by Eric Ries and Ask Your Developer: How to Harness the Power of Software Developers and Win in the 21st Century by Jeff Lawson. I have personally found them to be very instrumental in my professional development as an IT consultant, Project Manager and Software Developer.

Also Read: ATOMIC HABITS: A James Clear Book Review

A Brief History

Ken Schwaber & Jeff Sutherland first co-presented a paper, ”The SCRUM Development Process”, in 1995 at the Object-Oriented Programming, Systems, Languages & Applications (OOPSLA) Conference ‘95 in Austin, Texas. This was its first public appearance. After its first full implementation at the Easel Corporation in 1993 by Jeff Sutherland, John Scumniotales and Jeff McKenna.

It essentially documented the learning that they gained over the previous few years.  The scrum guide documents Scrum, as developed, evolved and sustained for 30+ years by Ken Schwaber and Jeff Sutherland. Other sources provide patterns, processes and insights that complement the Scrum framework.

What and why scrum?!

According to scrum.org, “Scrum is a framework within which people can address complex adaptive problems, while productively and creatively delivering products of the highest possible value.

Scrum empowers professionals to make decisions when addressing adaptive complex problems and do their jobs the right way.

scrum

The Past, Present, and Future of Scrum – Netmind Insights.

A summary breakdown of key Scrum points to remember.

A good Scrum typically has;-

  • A Product Owner who maximises the value of the product and also manages the product backlog.
  • A Scrum Master guides the Scrum team and makes sure everything in the sprints is done right and on schedule.
  • A Scrum Team usually has 5-9 members. In Software Development, the team will consist mostly of Developers, Designers, Testers, and QAs. Less than 5 would be “not enough skill”, and more than 9 would be “communication overhead and other issues therein.

For more information visit the scrum Website.

Also Read: Powering your professional growth with PDCA

Lastly, I will address Timeboxing

It’s important to develop sprints that are not more than 30 days. In essence, you should be able to deliver progress or increments within 30 days or less to avoid getting feature creep.

  • A sprint review event for a 30-day scrum event should be less than 4hrs and even lesser depending on days e.g., 30days, 3weeks, 2 weeks and 1week.
  • A Daily scrum should realistically be 15minutes at best.
  • Sprint retrospectives in a 30day scrum event should be 3hrs or less based on the days’ timeline as already explained.

These timebox examples should merely act as a point of reference for you to improve timeboxing for your scrums, depending on tasks, teams and size of projects or company standards.

Conclusion

Today more than ever, we need Scrum, a framework championed through the values; courage, focus, commitment, respect, and openness to achieve success.

Between reading Technology books and putting into practice what I’ve learned, I’ve been able to see continuous improvement in my professional career. I do hope sharing my Scrum Book Review helps whoever is reading this.

Cheers.