What is Scrum Ceremonies?
Two pillars that makeup Scrum framework ensure project delivery are flexibility and accountability. Scrum ceremonies, often known as Scrum rituals, allow Scrum teams to be agile as they go through the lifecycle of a project. Scrum ceremonies are also the place the time when team members are held accountable for their contribution to the project.
In this comprehensive tutorial on Scrum ceremonies, we’ll take an in-depth look at five specific events that form what’s known as the Scrum project management framework. We’ll also discuss the various Scrum meetings kinds and offer suggestions to help your team get more engaged in these ceremonies.
What is Scrum?
Before we get into the details about Scrum rituals, we should define what Scrum is in the first place.
Scrum is clearly defined as a project management framework that follows the guidelines laid forth in the Agile manifesto. It is often misinterpreted as a process for managing projects. However, this is not the reality. Agile is more of an approach to guiding the development of products and other complicated project types that are highly flexible.
Agile focuses on working with shorter durations and frequently collaborating to evaluate the work done and make necessary changes. Agile is an iterative method of managing projects designed to avoid finishing an undertaking and discovering that you’ve diverged from the plan for several weeks (or even months).
The Scrum framework uses these agile principles using brief, defined work intervals called sprints. The typical sprint lasts for two weeks, and however, they may be longer depending on the backlog and project items. After each sprint, the Scrum team meets to review its performance and make necessary adjustments to the course. In addition, Scrum calls for several scheduled meetings throughout the sprint. These meetings are often called “ceremonies,” also known as “rituals,” Each kind has a specific function.
Five Scrum events and Scrum meeting types?
A Scrum sprint consists of five events, four of which are meetings, often known as ceremonies or rituals. Four Scrum rituals are as follows:
- Sprint plan
- Daily Scrum
- Sprint review
- Sprint retrospective
The sprint itself is also a critical Scrum event because it is where the rubber meets the road and the actual project work is completed. Let’s look at each of the four Scrum ceremonies in more detail and see how they fit into the broader Scrum framework.
As the name suggests, this ceremony is held before the sprint start. The meeting determines the goals and any concerns or issues about the upcoming sprint. At the sprint planning event, the team will decide what items from the project backlog will be worked on in the scope of their sprint.
Essential elements of the sprint plan routine include:
- The goals of the sprint
- Identifying the tasks to be completed and who on the team will be accountable for them.
- The setting of goals to be met during the race, such as dates for completion and measures to gauge the extent of success
- Addressing any potential roadblocks, issues, and the possibility of scheduling conflicts that could affect the speed of the race
- Ensure that the plans are recorded and recorded into the Project Management Software and tracking systems to track the progress and ensure the accountability
When you plan your sprints, it is vital to be aware of any holiday, special events, or individual days off that might influence the execution or delivery of specific tasks. Sprints generally last for two weeks, which gives only 10 working days to complete the objectives you’ve set for your sprint. Furthermore, risk management must always be a factor during the sprint planning session. Scrum teams aren’t invincible to unexpected delays and hangups, so be sure to consider the possibility of these issues in your planning.
The daily Scrum, or “the daily stand-up,” is a brief scheduled daily meeting in which team members give an update on the status of the team. The meetings are quick and straightforward, typically taking just 15 minutes and not more than 30 minutes at most. The daily Scrum ensures that everyone is working on the tasks assigned and that any issues or obstructions are taken care of.
Daily Scrum ceremony should be focused on the following four issues:
- What has been achieved to date?
- What’s being developed currently?
- What’s coming up?
- Are there any barriers or obstacles hindering progress?
The daily Scrum is not to become an argument in the weeds, and if it does, you run the risk of being a part of your day talking instead of being productive. The Scrum Master‘s responsibility is to keep the process running smoothly. If a team member has a problem that requires additional attention, make sure you schedule some time out of the regular Scrum to deal with it.
Sprint reviews are the first of two after-sprint events. Since Scrum was created as an agile Software improvement framework, every sprint was designed to develop an increment that could be shipped, for example, creating a new feature. The new feature is showcased at the sprint review, and managers are asked for feedback and others.
Scrum has been adopted by project teams from various fields and disciplines that aren’t IT. However, the basic idea behind the sprint is unchanged: achieve a specific and clearly defined outcome. The sprint review happens at the time when the outcome is demonstrated or presented to the stakeholders to receive feedback and comments.
Sprint retrospectives are the next ceremony after an event has been completed, and it’s also the last event of this Scrum process. The retrospective ceremony is when the Scrum team evaluates its procedures to determine how they can be improved upon in the following sprints. Remember that the Agile approach requires a consistent evaluation and constant improvement. The ritual of retrospective sprints is among the essential aspects of the Scrum framework.
How to conduct the Scrum meeting
You can conduct an effective Scrum meeting with success by following these steps.
- Your meetings should be simultaneously and at the exact location every day.
- Make contact face-to-face or use video chat when communicating via video chat.
- Make them brief and direct -the meetings are typically just 15 minutes long.
- Be aware of any changes from the last meeting and the work that must be completed before the next meeting.
- Focus on the immediate actions and issues that require resolution. You can tackle any concepts, plans, or problems that will require additional attention in the future.
To stay focused during the Scrum meeting to keep the team focused, ask them three questions:
- Have you made progress since your last meeting?
- What are you planning to accomplish over these next 24-hours?
- What challenges or issues do you currently face?
Five other tips to ensure that your meetings are effective. Scrum meeting:
- Keep to your scheduled time and plan, and don’t let your meeting veer off course
- Bring out your Scrum board during the meeting so that your team members can keep track of how they are progressing.
- Don’t invite anyone from outside to the event unless it is necessary
- Make it an informal meeting
- Ensure you enforce the start and stop times, and ensure that your team is prepared.
Why are Scrum ceremonies useful for projects?
There’s one aspect that workers aren’t in the mood for the meeting. Team members spend an average of 21% of their time meeting with co-workers and managers. In addition, employees feel that 25 percent of their meeting time goes unnoticed. If meetings are not organized and unfocused, it results in discontent.
Scrum ceremonies, on the other hand, are extremely well-organized and focused.. Every Scrum ceremony has a specific purpose: to establish the expectations, foster efficient collaboration and deliver measured outcomes. Scrum events provide the foundation to allow teams to finish their tasks in a controlled and orderly way and improve the processes they use and enhance their abilities constantly.
How do you get your team excited for Scrum rituals?
As we’ve learned, every Scrum ritual has a specific purpose, unlike the ad-hoc meetings that employees are usually forced to attend. However, that doesn’t mean your team is always excited when they think of another day of Scrum. Even if they aren’t enthusiastic, the team members must be willing participants at every Scrum ceremony.
If employees feel that their contribution is valued and feel they have a stake in what they are doing, passion typically comes along. Here are some tips you can follow to bring a sense of responsibility to your team.
- As the Scrum leader, do not glance at your teammates when you are in the meeting. Instead, focus your attention on your computer or notepad when making notes. This kind of psychological trick forces your group members to glance at each other while giving their daily reports instead of staring at you as if they’re accountable to their boss.
- Another quick “hack” to signal that the gathering truly belongs to the group is to organize the event in a circle and then slowly walk away from it. The participants are likely to want to observe you while they make their way to the podium; however, they’ll soon realize they’re running the ceremony and reporting to one another.
- Instead of asking, “What did you accomplish?” or, “What do you plan to finish this morning?” focus your questions on the sprint’s goals. For example, you might inquire, “Are you confident that your team will be able to meet the sprint’s goal?” or, “Is it clear what should be completed today to meet our targets?”