Learn about the importance of a taskboard and how it can focus high priority work.
- So you've seen how important it is for agile teams to prioritize high-value work. They need to first focus on the features that the customer will always use. Then once those features are complete, they can move on to some of the less valuable or lower-priority work. One way that these agile teams help visualize this work is by creating something called a task board. A task board is a simple swim lane diagram. The reason it's called a swim lane diagram is because it has vertical columns that look a little bit like a swimming pool.
Now each of these columns or swim lanes holds a small batch of work. Typically, these are called tasks. Whichever column the task is in shows the status of that task. The simplest task board would only have three columns. To Do, Doing, and Done. If your team has a background in lean thinking, then they might call these columns work queues. Now a typical agile team will write broad statements of customer value in the form of a user story.
Then the team will create a column on the task board called User Stories. These user stories, like tasks, will be prioritized from top to bottom. Then the task to complete those user stories will be gathered next to it in the To Do column. You should keep in mind that many agile teams use the task board incorrectly. They'll just start whatever task they're comfortable working on and move it across the board. That's why it's usually best for the team to start with a real board with cards and stickies.
Now remember that the task board is not just a way to show what you're working on, instead it's a key part of verifying that the team is working on the highest value features.
- Recognize inhibitors that have a significant impact when managing an agile team.
- Define the “agile manifesto.”
- Recall the structure of a cross-functional team.
- Determine what should be included in user stories.
- Apply the 80/20 rule to determine the priority of highest value items.
- List two agile principles that guide the team to stay within time structures while remaining flexible enough to adapt to change.
- Name a disadvantage of the waterfall approach.