This is the video of my talk from ACCU 2015
on 25th April 2015 where I spoke on Investing Upstream: The secret to smooth Scrum sprints
It’s great when teams reach delivery maturity with execution at speed and high quality. It’s no surprise that there’s so much emphasis on doing Sprints well because that’s the heart of Scrum.
Paradoxically though, the secret to making it work well is actually investing time and effort upstream of Sprints to ensure that the Product Backlog is prioritised and broken-down into small items, that User Stories are well formed and that the Scrum team doesn’t meet items for the first time during Sprint Planning.
This ties in with solving the very difficult challenge of effective Product Ownership. Often the very people most valuable to the Scrum team are also the most valuable to the wider business, creating a conflict over their time. Many teams struggle with an absent Product Owner or one who is not sufficiently senior to make quick decisions.
The Scrum Guide says little about how to implement effective Product Ownership and how to get the Product Backlog into good shape. Most Scrum training focuses on the Sprints, so also misses this bigger picture.
Join us on our journey through a series of examples anchored in practical experience as we explore a range of tools and approaches to solve these problems. We’ll learn how to make Scrum function well in a way that meets both the Scrum team and Product Owner’s needs.