Previous post about Decision making can be found here. Let’s continue comparison.
Long term vs Short term planning
When you watch teams playing serious tournaments every game is not played like the Finals. In addition world-class teams participate in more than one tournament. Do you think it’s possible to win Bundesliga, domestic Cup and Champions league when you plan only one game ahead? If you don’t “save” your players and “force” them play at maximum level in every game you will not achieve such results.
For sure football coaches care about every game, but trend is more important for them. Last game might be an exception or just a bad luck. As the result all games are analyzed keeping in mind the whole tournament: how many games are played? how many games are left to play? what is the result of recent 3 games? ant etc.
What you can often see with software teams that sprint results are discussed without taking into account the whole roadmap. This leads to short-sighted actions or local optimizations, which is not necessarily the best choice. Good Scrum Masters must bring attention to this and make sure everybody recalls that team wants to win the “tournament”. What is your “tournament”?
Either i was lucky when was playing football at young age or it happens everywhere, but even kids coaches analyze games afterwards. So i bet that professional teams also do that. Game analysis is the only way to improve and learn from mistakes. And I was really surprised when found out how much time and effort is spent on that in football (including various kind of software and hardware that gathers necessary information). Of course various visualizations and statistics are not the ultimate answer to all the problems, but in good hands it can give you very good insights on how to continue.
No (powerful) retrospectives is the first signal that team is not improving, stuck or fell into a comfort zone. It means that Scrum Master is not doing his work and not focused on improvement. To have powerful retrospective team needs input, problems or results visualization, but it’s often teams are scared of any kind of metrics. Because of often abuse, when metrics are used by management to decide on salaries and bonuses, but not as additional information for the team to notice where to improve.
Football vs Software Development
Is it because football has predefined rules all these good practices are in place? Is it because Scrum is incomplete we have so many things depending on team’s maturity and Scrum Master’s experience? How do you handle that?
p.s. full presentation is available here. I will go through it in further posts.