How the COVID outbreak accidentally kickstarted SCRUM in our company

The actors: two dark scrum teams, our usual suspects

The scene: COVID 19 comes in

  1. Input several XML feeds with product data in the system
  2. Do some magic and employee interactions
  3. Send API requests with an order to our partners
  4. More super cool magic in the warehouse
  5. Satisfied customer at the end
  • “As a customer, I order products from multiple partners and I will receive it in one package.” (Get an order from our system and notify partner API.)
  • “As an employee, I can enlist products from a new partner using a provided XML feed with minimal extra work.”

The plot: doing the experiment

  1. Deliver it.
  2. Do little to no overtimes.
  3. Focus on MP project and nothing else.
Team loading a van with office stuff.
The team loading their stuff on the truck.

Step 1: Storymap it!

Step 2: Mini sprints

  • both teams would have brief planning together followed by detailed planning separately
  • separate stand-ups
  • do a shared review with stakeholders
  • show the results on the review in the production environment
  • do retrospectives separately

Unraveling the plot: see the results

The plot twist: the main retrospective

The 4L retrospective

What worked well?

  • sense of business urgency
  • a shared understanding of the purpose of the product
  • temporarily break the rigid old teams
  • 2 weeks timeframe
  • 2,5 half days sprints
  • shippable increment at the end of each sprint
  • no development besides the project
  • physical board using post-its
  • ad-hoc standups
  • get stakeholders on the review
  • do overall retrospective and follow-up on it
  • 4Ls combined with election manifesto retrospective as a retrospective format

Prague based full-stack developer and agile practitioner. Engineering Manager at @productboard 🚀

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Josef Sekava

Josef Sekava

Prague based full-stack developer and agile practitioner. Engineering Manager at @productboard 🚀

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