Story Points Burnt Should be Steady

Story points.  They are a difficult concept to grasp for those that aren’t familiar with seeing Scrum done right.  I recently had a ad-hoc conversation in which a number of PM’s (…. And an SM) stated that they expected the number of story points burnt to keep increasing as the team got ‘more advanced’.

I pointed out to a rather perplexed audience that actually the number of points will stay consistent as the team became more advanced.  Sometimes its easy to forget how the abstract can be counterintuitive.

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Theory of QA Bridging – Overview

Draft Version::   

I’ve often thought, why do projects fail ….?  Can we create a quantifiable formula that will predict the risk of failure and success in an approach?  Can I create a quantifiable theory that will explain why some approaches work better than other approaches?

QA and successful project delivery are inextricably linked.   If you can embed good QA throughout a project, the chances of success increase.

What follows is a short explanation of a QA theory I’m proposing – and actually put into practice at several client sites.

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Your Team is too BIG (Scrum)

Team sizes,  I’ve been around a number of projects and yet again the size of some Scrum teams never ceases to amaze me.  A recent problem project I landed on had 20 people in the stand up – I observed the following:

  1. People talked, some clearly and a lot not so clearly – it was very hard to hear 70% of the team members
  2. The team members gave an update – hardly any of the updates resulted in team engagement and interaction
  3. The board did not reflect reality
  4. Everyone was talking to the Scrum Master
  5. The team members looked disengaged and body language was poor
  6. A lot of things were ‘stuck in test’, mainly because the stories were not flowing through at a consistent rate

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We can’t do it because we’re Agile ….

‘We can do it right? Because we are Agile aren’t we …?’ 

‘Agile’ …. its seems to be a double edged sword.  I have often thought, and later attempted to ban the word Agile on projects.  It became a verbal weapon for external stakeholders to make a team yield to their ad hoc whims.  An excuse to throw unstructured requests into a machine that has started to show results.

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