Surprisingly, most teams following Scrum see Daily Scrum Meeting (DSM) as just a 15 min ritual – one where teams get together to exchange updates. And quite conveniently, an inordinate percentage of scrum masters tow the ‘update’ line. They use DSMs to merely tick boxes off – facilitating and collecting the aforementioned updates. Now this treatment meted out to DSMs – possibly the most important scrum event – is quite a pity.
The good ol’ DSM, my friends, is hardly a plain ‘status update’ event – it is a lot more, as I’ll go on to explain in the next few paragraphs. In this blog I will try to capture the true essence of a DSM, by way of a few key pointers. The focus being on how to conduct the event effectively, and what to avoid therein.
To begin with, have you ever wondered why a DSM is often referred to as a ‘stand up’? The moniker drives at succinct, focussed meetings. A quick catch-up that enables Dev team members to focus on the bigger picture, while collectively working towards sprint goals. The last thing you want is to waste precious time, by way of a long and unfocussed get-together.
DSM is a time-boxed event, for the development team to showcase and synchronize their work items with other team members. It enables everyone to share inputs on these work items, while also being able to help those facing barriers.
The purpose of sharing updates goes beyond publishing the progress made. It should also enable transparency and discussion of work items each team member is planning to work on. This offers the team a chance to visualize underlying dependencies and to offer help around addressing any impediments. The core principle here operates on planning, doing, checking, adapting, and communicating on a daily basis.
To help you to get the most value out of your DSMs, I have tried summarizing a list of things you should do and a list of things you shouldn’t do below. Please go through them and try incorporating them into your DSMs. We would love to hear your experience and feedback on this checklist, you can reach us at [email protected]
15 key pointers that could help in conducting an effective DSM
10 Key pointers on what to avoid while conducting a DSM…
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