There are a lot of articles I’ve read recently which highlight the importance and purpose of a particular component of Scrum. I’ve found that a constant barrage of these super specific call-outs can have an inverse effect – I am less able to focus on what’s most important right now.
As a professional Scrum Master, the impact of being able to learn more about a particular piece of the framework can be invaluable but the bigger picture and idealism can get lost when buried in the minutiae.
What is it all about?
It seems impossible to boil the framework down to one core piece or part of the process as being “the most important.” I’ve had heated debates with folks on this who would say that a Definition of “Done” is the key element to making Scrum work, or that if only they had a strong Product Owner, the rest of it would all fall into place. I’ve fallen into this trap myself – it’s a natural response. When we see something that doesn’t align with our vision of the perfect implementation, we are quick to simplify the problem so that we can simplify the solution. Unfortunately, my experience has never been that straight-forward.
When I’m asked to talk about what Scrum is to folks who are not in product development, I struggle to find an elevator pitch that leaves me feeling that I’ve done justice to the inherent complexity of development and people as well as the comfort and implications that the framework brings to the surface.
A more holistic view of Scrum is needed to truly keep its components cohesive and relevant. The framework, in my mind, is less like a jigsaw puzzle where each piece fits together to create a masterpiece and more like those ancient labyrinths where the configuration is simple enough to allow those on the path an opportunity to discover something new and the onus lies with the sojourner not the maze.
Starting the change
It is very likely that the majority of people who want to see change and want to employ that change using Scrum have varying perspectives on what is most valuable to them. There is certainly an incredible amount of value in having a unifying vision at any organization. Being able to rely on your leaders to coalesce as a group that builds confidence in the direction of your organization breeds a sense of comfort and sustainability. However, the role that each individual takes to redefine an organization through the use of Scrum is necessarily going to vary and that is a good thing!
The power of an individual’s perspective on a small team of people can have huge impacts. I’ve seen people take on challenges and improve organizations armed only with the understandin