Think of your business model as a car. You just recently bought a new set of agile tires to help you cover more ground. Despite the recent changeover, your business is still plodding. What you need to do is add some Scrum to the engine.
Most businesses are implementing the Scrum methodology to generate a faster product output. Agile streamlines the process even further by creating an unbreakable assembly line built on teamwork. It’s important to note that while both drive toward the same outcome; they are considered one part of each other’s grand scheme.
To illustrate how the Scrum and agile methods work together, let’s rundown a list of ways you can retrofit your business structure so you get the most out of both.
Consult a Mentor
An agile mentor could be another Scrum master or community of agile practitioners who are willing to guide you through the setup process. A mentor may ask you about your product output or how many employees who are willing to participate. These are important factors to consider when building up your team.
Build Your Team Carefully
Building a team that is compliant to the agile method takes a lot of time and consideration. The number of an average Scrum team is roughly 4 or 5 people. This small number may come as great news to local entrepreneurs looking to better their small business’ direction. This can even be advertised in your small business directory listing and other marketing efforts. But, you can’t just expect any employee to take to this new system.
Team members have to be motivated and energetic about their work. Apathy and corner cutting will not be tolerated.
So, you have assembled your team and are ready to get to work. An important part of the Scrum method is the regular meetings. These meetings allow the employees to voice their concerns while reporting on the group’s progress. If employees are willing to be honest about their work, then you need to honest with them.
Imagine a fellow teammate approaches you personally about concerns regarding the speed of the workflow. They aren’t expecting to hear mealy mouthed responses and “Why don’t you ask me later.” Make yourself approachable to teammates and open lines of communication. Consider adopting a private e-mail account to share notes and info between departments.
Gather Hard Data
Just as you and your teammates need to validate each other’s efforts, you also have to prove yourself to the product owner. At the end of a project, or “sprint,” a Scrum Master holds a meeting with the product owner. These meetings require presentation of hard data generated by your team’s productivity.
Naturally, these data points are converted into charts for easy presentation. Burndown charts are created to illustrate the amount of work- completed and residual- with the backlog of a sprint. A velocity chart records the speed of the employees’ production. Both of these are taken into account by the owner to determine how successful the agile implementation was. If all the numbers are good, plan your next project ahead of time.