The three most common problems at work and what Scrum can do about it
Scrum is a framework that provides the basis for any kind of job situation. The important part is not the different methods nor the tools in themselves, but why, and how, you fill them with content. Under the different headlines, you will see how Scrum contributes to making the job easier.
Too Little Time
In Scrum, we use the tools to provide out time with the right kind of content
- In Scrum you recognise that time is limited* – might seem evident, but how many workplaces acknowledge this fact?
- We investigate how much time/energy that is needed for each action – and prioritise by comparing value to cost in time
- By focusing on what gives the most value to the customer we will, even when time is limited, deliver what is most important
* the goal is to work out the optimal time utilisation for each individual so they can contribute at all level that allows for energy and development
Too much to do
In Scrum, we use the tools to help co-workers to focus on the right things – and we accept that there always will be things that won’t be done. In fact, if there isn’t a backlog that won’t be done, we have not been inventive and flexible enough!
- In Scrum, we define, more specifically, what actions have to be done to produce a given goal
- Hence you know both what you are going to do and when you are done
- These definitions are made in the team: those who are doing the work also decides how it is done
- The concrete goals also make it easier to communicate upwards in the organisation what is produced, and being grounded in the practicalities, will also provide more understanding than more traditionally used KPI’s
- By frequent prioritising, we will always focus on what is most important (for the customer) and by testing goals, we will know that we are on the right track
- Since there are frequent evaluations we can also try out new ideas, or change direction, without losing too much time (in consideration to more traditional methods)
The human factor
Scrum has tools to handle the most consequential for any workplace: the human factor! There are specific roles (Scrum Master and Product Owner) that have the responsibility to handle the human interactions and communications.
In the team
- The Scrum master helps with interpersonal development
- Well defined goals allow us to help each other
- Working as a team will give you insight into what the others contribute to the goal
- Continuous learning with the right to make mistakes
Within the organisation
- Scrum Master and PO helps with interpersonal communications
- Well defined goals that are visible to management
- Frequent evaluation
- Easy access to project facts and figures
- Continuous learning: understanding how to support rather than steer
Towards the customer
- PO helps with interpersonal communications
- Frequent evaluation, clear results, and prototypes enable flexibility
- Continuous learning: the customer understands what s/he wants
Let the structure work for you instead of you working for the structure!