Are you wondering why your projects fail? In this video, learn how scrum takes a different approach so your projects succeed.
- Language changes around us all the time. It's like a living, breathing thing. As we use and adapt words, new definitions are created to match what they mean in current times. Take Google for example. When the word was originally coined in the 1930s it meant a numeric value of 10 to the 100th power. Fast forward about 70 years and with a spelling tweak it became the name and sole product of an internet company. Just a few short years after that it was transformed again from a noun to a verb about how to find an answer to really any question you can come up with.
Similarly the Scrum we're talking about is an adaptation of the word scrummage taken from the game rugby. Now, Google, going from a company name to the name of their application to the action of the app, kind of makes sense. But scrum from rugby? How does that work? Well, in rugby a scrummage, scrum for short, was the method used to restart play in a match after a foul. Visually it's eight players from each team packed together with heads down, all trying to take possession of the ball.
So, not exactly the poster child for project management but with a little imagination it makes sense. On a project team the goal is to get the project done. Historically, using traditional methods, this meant planning and designing the whole project at the beginning and sticking to that plan with no variation. In real life project work is completely unpredictable. It's impossible to know at the beginning exactly how a project will unfold and how to best meet its unique challenges.
The Agile project management movement comes out of a desire to adapt in real time to the changing circumstances that teams face. And this is where the rugby team comes in. The founders of the Agile movement recognized that in rugby the object is to move the ball down the field one possession at a time. So, why couldn't projects do the same thing? Why not change the focus from just winning the whole game to winning each and every milestone and deliverable.
These innovators co-opted the word scrum to reflect this new approach, an approach that breaks the deliverables and milestones into smaller pieces and gets the whole team together to focus on just that one goal until it's done. Like in rugby, if the small individual scores happened on a regular cycle, winning the game or delivering the project would take care of itself. So, the sporting word scrum has been transformed in the last several years to have a new meaning.
It means to run your projects more like a rugby match, pursuing the small goals and deliverables that will get your project done.
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- Understanding the scrum approach to project success
- Solving project problems with scrum
- Establishing your scrum team
- Setting the vision for your project
- Writing user stories
- Setting boundaries for success
- Getting stories done in scrum
- Assessing the team