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Are you a victim of 'Fake Scrum'? Here's how to spot the warning signs and take action!
If you were to ask any manager why they want to adopt Scrum, they would probably mention some of the following benefits:
Faster time to market
Higher quality deliverables
Improved collaboration and teamwork
Better visibility and transparency in projects
Improved communication among team members
Increased flexibility and adaptability to change
More efficient use of resources
Greater focus on customer value and needs
Improved morale and job satisfaction
Better alignment of project goals and business objectives
More effective prioritization of tasks and features
Increased innovation and creativity
Better estimation and planning
More effective tracking and reporting of project progress
Greater predictability in project outcomes
Increased agility in responding to changes in market conditions
More efficient use of project resources
More effective collaboration among cross-functional teams
Increased focus on continuous improvement and learning.
It's rare to hear someone say they want to adopt Scrum to increase profits or reduce costs. But that can be a post for another day.
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Q. Do you want those benefits?
Q. Do you have active goals for them and work on achieving them
The truth is hard to swallow: no organization that uses agile or Scrum has a specific goal to achieve any of these benefits. For instance, no one sets out to improve time-to-market or speed up delivery. Although they desire these benefits, they do not actively pursue them. This is the crux of the issue with fake agile and fake Scrum. People fail to obtain the benefits they want, not because agile or Scrum is inadequate, but because they do not put in the necessary effort to deliberately achieve those benefits.
All of these benefits are complex problems that require many adaptations and improvements to achieve. If it were easy, everyone would be doing it. If anyone promises you that agile or Scrum will automatically give you these benefits, beware of snake-oil salesmen from whom you get advice.
To achieve these benefits, you need to make tough decisions and fix the underlying issues that are impeding progress. The Scrum framework provides an iterative structure for resolving problems by allowing you to make improvements whilst containing risk. The framework creates feedback loops and placeholders for reflection and improvement, both for your product/service and the processes/approaches you use.
As the Scrum Guide defines scrum as
Scrum is a lightweight framework that helps people, teams, and organizations generate value through adaptive solutions for complex problems.
To improve your business and achieve those benefits, you need to make those benefits actual goals and then make changes to achieve them. It is complex. It will require you to make many adaptations to find a solution.
In order to start and succeed, you will need to have some courage, openness, focus, commitment and respect.
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Schwaber, K., & Sutherland, J. (2020). The Scrum Guide™. Retrieved from https://scrumguides.org/scrum-guide.html