I'm not a fan of sprintsNot all worthy goals take the same amount of time to accomplish.
I’ve never been a fan of the “sprint” concept. I don’t mean running. Actually, I do really hate running.
What I’m talking about is the idea of having a 2-week (or so) iteration in which we work toward a specific product goal, as described in the Scrum guide.
Of course there are many ways teams implement “sprints” that aren’t focused around a sprint goal. If you find your team playing Story-Point Tetris during your Sprint Planning, you’re not using a proper sprint goal, and I’m not talking about you (although I have a lot of other problems with Story-Point Tetris).
I actually really like the idea of a proper sprint goal. “The Sprint Goal is the single objective for the Sprint.”
I love this single-minded focus, and most teams would do well to take a step or ten in that direction.
What I don’t like is the idea of coupling a single-minded focus with the fixed time frame of a sprint.
Not all worthy goals take the same amount of time to accomplish.
The Scrum Guide does give us one little escape hatch from the fixed-length sprint concept: “A Sprint could be cancelled if the Sprint Goal becomes obsolete.”
I suppose if we take enough liberties with this, we could say that a Sprint Goal becomes obsolete as soon as it’s accomplished, and if that takes 25 minutes, so be it.
I really don’t think that’s within the spirit of the Scrum Guide, but it’s the way I prefer to work: Choose a single-minded goal. Make sure that goal is achievable within a reasonable time frame (2 weeks is a good upper bound). Then work on that, and only that (barring true emergencies) until it’s complete. Then choose the next most valuable goal.
My very first (and last?) successful sprint
We didn't call it that then, but looking back, it certainly looked like one.
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