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07
MAR
2024

What is a User Story?

A user story describes a small feature that one or two people can finish in two to five days.  I like to describe a user story as a chunk – or chunklette – of value that a Scrum Team will deliver and demonstrate to the customer by the end of a Sprint.   History of...
27
SEP
2018

5 Steps to Better Scrum Team Agreements

Working Agreements are one of the core compacts that all good Agile teams need and use. For those of you unfamiliar with Working Agreements, they are nothing more than agreed upon protocols created by the team govern their interactions and clarify expectations. They are different...
08
DEC
2017

Webinar: How to Prioritize a Backlog

The Product Backlog: It’s that ordered list of everything known to be needed in the product.  Ordering means prioritization, and the Scrum Alliance ® Collaboration at Scale webinar series will be hosting Carlton Nettleton, CST® and president of Look Forward Consulting, and Luke...
12
DEC
2016

Yesterday’s Weather: An Extreme Programming Planning Technique Using Story Points

Yesterday’s Weather is an Extreme Programming planning technique used to estimate the capacity of a Team based on their past performance. Yesterday’s Weather is a guide to help Teams neither under commit nor overcommit to a set of Product Backlog items during Sprint...
28
NOV
2016

Estimating the Size of Scrum User Stories

In Scrum, the owner of the estimates is very clear.  Only the people who do the work, i.e., the Team, have the right to offer estimates for the Product Backlog and Sprint Backlog items.  However, like many things in Scrum, the framework leaves it up to each Team to decide on what...
17
NOV
2015

Top Ten Articles You Didn’t Read: Best of the Best

  While I started with Scrum in 2005, I did not start writing about Scrum, Agile, Extreme Programming, Lean and Kanban until 2008.  Not sure why I took so long to begin writing?  I probably did not have anything to say which is quite unusual for me.  I have an opinion on...
13
OCT
2015

A Visual Control for the Masses – A Task Board

One of the greatest challenges to trust, collaboration and self-organization in the workplace is visibility.  This is because most of software development is intellectual work without physical representation.  We take complex ideas on what a software product should do and express...
07
OCT
2015

When Will You Be Done? The Release Burndown Chart

The work will get done when it gets done.  Demanding that a new product, service or upgrade be completed by January 23, 2016 is just not helpful.  Arbitrary deadlines simply cause too much stress and anguish for everyone – developers, customers and managers.  The people...
02
OCT
2015

Burndown Charts Got You Down? Meet Your Helpful Alternative – Burnup Chart

Burndown charts are bad!  Burndown charts are abused by mangers!  We hate Burndown charts (and estimates!!), so let’s get rid of them all!  If you are hearing those words, or something similar, from the fire eaters in your office, they are probably right. While I like Burndown...
29
SEP
2015

The Much Maligned, but Every Useful Burndown Chart

In Scrum, the best way to show progress is through working software.  If you do not produce software at the end of each Sprint, you are doing it wrong.  Progress is not shown through reports, documents, screenshots or charts. So what about a Burndown chart?  Can’t someone look at...