The Scrum process puts everyone on the team in the same position—Developer, doing what is necessary for the team to achieve its goal. I am guessing that in most teams, unlike pure Scrum, there is natural alignment or gravitation—each team member plays a more specialized role more often than not, like Analyst, Developer, or Tester. […]Read more "Are your analysts too far ahead of the team?"
We are getting closer to the end of the year, and its that time again to start the annual performance review process at my company, and yours too. Think about the whole annual appraisal, or performance measurement, process for a moment. At my company at least, there are a few steps to the process—you write a […]Read more "Write a kick ass self-assessment for your annual performance review, and why it’s important"
We are all familiar with the standard Daily Scrum, or Daily Standup, template, where the team gathers around the story card wall or Kanban board and each individual shares what they did yesterday, what they will do today, and what help they may need in order to accomplish their daily goal. This is an effective way […]Read more "The story-focused Daily Scrum"
As a manager, its important to provide timely, actionable feedback for associates (or employees, if you will), so they can learn and grow. Since we don’t spend every hour of the day sitting next to each associate in their workspace, in addition to our own direct observation, we have to rely heavily on input from […]Read more "Using peer survey feedback as an input for coaching discussions"
Does your team feel like their Sprint Retrospective is a value add activity? I’ve heard from team members that the Retro isn’t a good use of their time, or that its just a checklist item—something that has to be done. Sometimes I observe team members arrive late, or spend time working on their computer or phone, […]Read more "Is your team getting value from its Sprint Retro?"
One-on-one (1:1) meetings—do you set them up each month, or does your manager? Do you look forward to having a good development conversation with your manager or mentor, or are you trying to find something to say for the next 30 minutes? Think of your regular one-on-one meeting with your manager or your mentor as a […]Read more "Using Scrum as a framework to have better one-on-one meetings with your manager or mentor"
Does your manager request feedback for you on a regular basis, or as an input into your annual performance review? Do you request feedback for yourself from your team? Once you have feedback, hopefully you received a mix of positive and critical, but constructive, comments that will help you learn and grow. Feedback is a […]Read more "So you have a feedback survey, now what?"
On the teams where I have worked, a common topic during Sprint Retrospectives is what exactly should be included in the acceptance tests for each user story. How does the Analyst best communicate to the team how the software should behave? How will the Tester know what tests to execute? I really like the joke […]Read more "Efficient acceptance tests are all that’s required"