For almost a year now LevelTen has been making a slow transition from the traditional waterfall development methodology to an agile one. Our team had read about the benefits of Scrum – visibility of progress, increase in team morale, more accurate estimating of required effort, lightweight specs and requirements documentation. We were all on board to try it, so what took us so long?
As a small interactive agency, we faced several challenges in implementing classic “by the book” Scrum. Every case study and book we read about Scrum seemed to focus on large, lengthy projects completed by a team of specialists. We have quite the opposite. We don’t just build a single product; we’re working on multiple projects at a time. And while every member of our team is special, we’re forced to be Scrum generalists. While we would love to have dedicated Product Owners and ScrumMasters, that’s just not an option for us right now.
We read the seminal Scrum books by Cohn and Schwaber and met with the experts at Improving Enterprises, but we really needed to see Scrum in action. The team at Fellowship Technologies was nice enough to let us come over and watch how it was done. They let us sit in on their Scrum Planning and Review meetings and gave us a tour of their amazing development offices that were designed around their Scrum process. It was incredibly helpful to get out of our own environment and be Scrum Anthropologists for the day.
I highly recommend this exercise to anyone implementing Scrum in your organization. Observing another group answered questions we hadn't even thought to ask yet and it gave us the push we needed to have our first official LevelTen Blended Sprint - which went great thanks to an awesome team and the guys at Fellowship!
To find a Scrum User Group near you, check out the listings at Scrum Alliance. The Dallas Scrum Users Group will meet next Wednesday, April 8, from 6:30 to 8:30 at Fellowship Technologies, 6363 N State Highway 161 Suite 400, Irving, TX 75038. map