[Open Sussex] # _
product development with agile


Scrum, one of the most popular “agile” frameworks people are adopting (or abusing) in the work place.

As a software developer I have a soft spot for Scrum. The Guide is small and easy to read.

How I like to frame Scrum, is that it’s a mirror that will reflect dysfunction in an organisation. The framework sets in place what’s needed so that a team (and an organisation) can start to see what’s not working. Scrum will not tell you how to solve the problems your team is facing. And this is where, I believe, people start to have a problem with Scrum. It doesn’t have the answers. It doesn’t have the answers because all organisations and teams are different, and it takes the courage and will power of the members of the team and organisation to look at the dysfunctions and work out what methods and processes are required for them to fix those problems.

This means people have to explore new ways of working, new ways of thinking.

I’ve seen in the past organisations adopting different frameworks as they don’t like the outcome. But what they fail to do is “inspect” what’s going on. They fail to acknowledge that the problem is with in the organisation or at the team level. They don’t want to hear that it might be them as an individual causing the problem. Easy to switch to a new framework. Problem is that the dysfunction keeps following them. They’ll never get rid of it.

So, for me, Scrum is the very very minimum framework that can be put in place to help a team start to build upon. It’s like the scaffolding around a house during construction - it’s not the house itself - but it’s required to get the house completed.