TL; DR: The Stoic Scrum Master – Making Your Scrum Work (30)
Can wisdom from the past still be relevant to today’s VUCA-determined world? I started reading Marcus Aurelius’ Meditations some time ago and found it intriguing; maybe it applies to “Agile?” In other words: is there something like a Stoic Scrum Master?
If I understand Stoicism correctly, it is about living a life of virtue, which comprises wisdom, justice, courage, and moderation. (All of those can be further subdivided, see Stoic Ethics.) For whatever reason, I felt reminded of Scrum Values and thought: could it be that the first principles of “agile” haven’t been defined by the Agile Manifesto but by “Zeno of Citium in Athens in the early 3rd century BCE?”
So, I embarked on a fun exercise of asking our beloved LLM to create an essay that applies Stoicism to Scrum, notably the Stoic Scrum Master.
TL; DR: Agile Transformation with ChatGPT or McBoston?
This article is another excursion into this nascent yet fascinating new technology of generative AI and LLMs and the future of knowledge work. I was interested in learning more about a typical daily challenge many agile practitioners face: How shall we successfully pursue an agile transformation? Shall we outsource the effort to one of the big consultancies — McBoston? Or shall we embark on an agile transformation with ChatGPT providing some guidance?
If technology can pass a Wharton MBA exam, maybe, it deserves some attention. We thought that AI might initially come after simple office jobs. I am no longer sure about that. Maybe, ChatGPT’s successor will start at the top of the food chain.
TL; DR: Business Agility, Scrum and Generative AI’s Take on Getting There
There has been a lot of talking about generative AI recently, mainly fueled by excellent work results in the text and graphics area. A few days ago, OpenAI made a new model available that “interacts in a conversational way. The dialogue format makes it possible for ChatGPT to answer follow-up questions, admit its mistakes, challenge incorrect premises, and reject inappropriate requests.” (Source.)
I thought it might be fun to ask ChatGPT a few questions about business agility in general and Scrum in particular.
TL; DR: Value Creation in Scrum
As a tactical framework, Scrum is good at delivering Increments into customers’ hands. As we work in iterations, we probably do that several times per month, mitigating risk by closing feedback loops. Nevertheless, there is a potentially hazardous void in the framework that successful Scrum teams start plugging early: how to figure out what is worth building—product discovery—in the first place. As a result, value creation in Scrum is not as straightforward as you might have thought.
TL; DR: Scrum Tools, Part 1
“The Scrum framework is purposefully incomplete, […].” (Source.) This half-sentence is probably one of the more often misinterpreted statements of the Scrum Guide. On the one side, it defines the necessity to enhance Scrum with other practices and tools. On the other side, it is the reason that so many attempts to practice Scrum are simply botched, resulting in ScrumBut versions of epic diversity. So, let’s look at proven Scrum tools and practices enhancing a purposefully incomplete framework without defying or negating its first principles.
Please note that the following Scrum tools and practices list is not complete. Please feel free to add more suggestions by commenting.
TL; DR: When Should a Team Stop Using Scrum?
When is the time to look beyond Scrum? After all, many things—ideas, practices, mantras, etc.—outlive their utility sooner or later; why would Scrum be an exception? Moreover, we are not getting paid to practice Scrum but solve our customers’ problems within the given constraints while contributing to the sustainability of our organization. Scrum is a tool, a helpful practice but neither a religion nor a philosophy. Which brings us back to the original question: Is there a moment when a Scrum team should stop using Scrum?