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Over the past few years, many organizations have adopted Agile Methodology and formed new Scrum Teams for Product Development. Do you know that almost 87% of these Agile Teams participate in Daily Scrum? Indeed, it is the most popular event of all the Scrum Events. However, many Scrum Teams struggle to conduct successful Daily Scrum effectively. If that’s the case in your organization, let’s review how you can make this popular Scrum Event more productive! This article shares some tips for Agile Teams and Scrum Masters to run productive Daily Scrums.
What Is The Main Purpose Of Daily Scrum?
The Daily Scrum, also known as the Daily Standup, is a fundamental Event in the Scrum Framework. It serves as a daily synchronization point for the Scrum Team, which typically includes the Scrum Master, Product Owner, and Developers. The primary purpose of the Daily Scrum meeting is to boost team collaboration with clear transparency. It helps to make quick decision-making with the help of three essential questions:
1. What did the teams accomplish yesterday?
2. What do they plan to work on today?
3. What are the impeding blockers affecting the work progress?
These questions facilitate real-time communication among Agile teams in Daily Scrum. Everyone tries to identify potential roadblocks and look for solutions that can align the current progress with the Sprint Goal.
Top Tips To Complete The Daily Scrum Within 15 Minutes:
As Daily Scrum happens almost every day, it can become boring and not-so-productive without proper guardrails. Hence, it’s important to take team initiatives to make Daily Scrums more productive! Here are the tips to conduct successful Scrum Calls:
#1 Enforce The 15 Mins Time Box
The 15-minute constraint of meeting duration is deliberate. It enforces brevity, encouraging team members to deliver concise updates. This disciplined approach helps teams stay on track and prevents discussions from derailing. This can be done by using subtle prompts such as ‘timeout’, deploying a timer etc.
#2 Pre-schedule The meeting On Same Time Everyday
Choosing a fixed time for the Daily Scrum fosters predictability. Team members can plan their workday around this event, ensuring maximum attendance and participation. So, organizations should conduct the call at the same time every day!
#3 Schedule An After-Meeting At The Day End
Some topics require more extensive discussion and problem-solving. To avoid prolonging the Daily Scrum, schedule separate meetings at the end of the Daily Scrum as required. This preserves the brevity of the Daily Scrum while addressing complex issues thoroughly. Such sessions can be called as ‘Parking Lot’ discussions.
#4 Ask Minimize Open-Ended Questions
"Yes/no" questions cut to the chase. They encourage team members to provide succinct responses, eliminating the need for lengthy explanations. This promotes efficiency and keeps the meeting within the 15-minute timeframe.
#5 Minimize Interruptions During The Call
Daily Scrums are for the Developers. Limit participation to team members only, reducing distractions. Restricting attendance to the Scrum Team minimizes interruptions from outsiders. Visitors or non-essential team members can cause distractions, so it's crucial to maintain a focused environment.
#6 Be Agile And Accept Everyone’s Opinion
The Scrum framework is designed to be adaptable. Experiment with different questions and prompts during the Daily Scrum to keep it engaging and relevant. Tailor the format to suit your team's unique dynamics and goals. Adapt the format to suit your team's needs. Experiment with different prompts to encourage engagement.
#7 Prompt Closure Of The Meeting
Ending the Daily Scrum precisely at the 15-minute mark instills discipline in time management. Team members learn to provide updates efficiently, respecting everyone's schedules. It reinforces the importance of time management and encourages brevity in updates.
Highlighting Daily Scrum Agenda For All Participants:
The Daily Scrum typically follows this format:
The Daily Scrum involves the entire Scrum Team, including the Scrum Master, Product Owner, and Developers. Each team member provides brief updates on their progress and any potential impediments.
Role of the Scrum Master: The Scrum Master facilitates the Daily Scrum but does not dominate it. They ensure the meeting stays within the time frame and help remove impediments discussed during the meeting.
Role of the Product Owner: The Product Owner attends the Daily Scrum to stay informed about the team's progress and to make informed decisions. They can also help clarify any doubts related to the Product Backlog. However, it has to be crisp and short.
The Ultimate Meeting Aim:
The primary goal of the Daily Scrum is to ensure that everyone is on the same page. All Agile Teams must know about Sprint's progress. It promotes transparency among team members to achieve the same Sprint Goal.
Key Takeaways for Agile Teams:
The Daily Scrum is a vital component of the Agile Scrum framework. By following these tips and best practices, teams can conduct efficient Daily Scrums in under 15 minutes, enhancing collaboration and productivity. Remember, the Daily Scrum is a skill that can be honed over time, turning it from a challenge into a well-oiled part of your Agile process.