Short Definition of Scrum
I was inspired by tweet I saw highlighting Peter Stevens’ post discussing the essence of Scrum. Here is my description of Scrum without any of our jargon.
“Scrum is a framework for Teams to get work done.
Every activity, ritual and artifact found in Scrum enables the team to provide visibility, make commitments and focus on continuous improvement.
While there are two roles to help the Team remain concentrated on their objectives, the cross-functional, collaborative Team is the central hub of Scrum.
Scrum Teams work in fixed iterative cycles from a few weeks up to 30 days. At the end of each increment, the Team discusses their progress to date, receives feedback from their sponsors, and makes any necessary adjustments to reach their goals.”
98 words — not bad.
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Carlton Nettleton is the SVP of Product at Applied Frameworks, and co-creator of the company's Online Academy. Carlton has over eighteen years of industry experience working with clients to improve quality, increase productivity, build great teams, and launch new products using Agile software development practices and techniques.
Today, Carlton’s focus is directed at mentoring and supporting Scrum and Agile practitioners who work in less than ideal conditions. He shares his energy and enthusiasm with our learners so they can achieve their personal and professional goals. Carlton is fluent in both English and Spanish, has written a short book on Scrum and has been Certified Scrum Trainer® since 2012. Read Full Bio
Interesting how this one differs from Peter’s. Both are good, but this one is more team-centric. I like that. Better if it was also able to identify the two other roles though. Challenging in 100 words!
I thought about highlighting the roles by name in the description and then I remembered the confines of the challenge – 100 words or less AND remove the jargon. The terms “Product Owner” and “ScrumMaster” still rely on the usage of jargon, so I eliminated them.
Also, if the Team is the center of Scrum, do these roles need to be identified? I would say no since in a 100 word or less description of Scrum, I feel the ScrumMaster and Product Owner are just supporting roles. Now, in a 200 hundred word description of Scrum, I would promote them to headlining co-stars, but that was not the challenge.
Let’s see what someone else can come up with…
Carlton, I like your team-centered version too.
To me, the part “While there are two roles to help the Team remain concentrated on their objectives” is the one with the lowest information/word-count ratio.
Maybe Tobias’ challenge “refine the two other roles” can be reformulated: answer the question “why two?”. IMHO, both ensure accountability, one for process, one for committed objectives…
Anyway, kudos for a very readable 100 word definition!
@Francois I like your perspective on accountability because I often explain Scrum is framework for visibility AND accountability.
Readers may find this resource useful: Scrum cheat sheet
My attempt at “Scrum in 100 words or less”
Scrum uses sprint cycles of up to 30 days for developing or enhancing software. The Product Owner (PO) and the Scrum Master (PO) define and guide the team whose roles are loosely defined and frequently overlap. Scrum Master schedules daily meetings of up to 15 minutes to keep pulse on development progress. Scrum is a form of agile and it uses stories to visualize software features.
I really like the first two sentences. They really focus on what Scrum is about and not only on what Scrum is. I think that’s one of the biggest problems when implementing Scrum. You need to understand what it is about, why it works, not only which roles, ceremonies or artifacts it defines. The mindset and principles are more important than the practices.
I also feel the third sentences does not convey as much information as the rest and think just ” the cross-functional, collaborative Team is the central hub of Scrum” would probably have been better.