Project Management

Why You Should Add Explicit Workflow to Scrum

From the Manifesting Business Agility Blog
This blog concerns itself with organizations moving to business agility—the quick realization of value predictably and sustainably, and with high quality. It includes all aspects of this—from the business stakeholders through ops and support. Topics will be far-reaching but will mostly discuss FLEX, Flow, Lean-Thinking, Lean-Management, Theory of Constraints, Systems Thinking, Test-First and Agile.

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Why You Should Add Explicit Workflow to Scrum

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In ’09, after Kanban had its coming out party at the Miami Lean-Kanban Conf, Ken Schwaber blasted the “explicit workflow” concept of Kanban on the misguided thinking that people would follow this explicit workflow

Explicit means “stated clearly and in detail, leaving no room for confusion or doubt"

Implicit means “implied though not plainly expressed”

There should be no inference that explicit means hard to change or something to follow. It just means that we’ve stated what we think the best way of working is. It's changed with just another explicit statement

Part of an explicit workflow can also have an out like – “except when” or “let someone know when you don't do it, if there's a better way"

The agreements they represent are a reflection of what the team believes is the best way of working, not something to be followed

The idea that explicit means hard to change or to be followed is one of the great misunderstandings of Lean/KB still in the Scrum community. A common understanding of how people are working improves collaboration and discovering better ways of working. W/o explicit workflow it gets hard to make improvements since no one is sure what is being done. 

For more, read Why DA FLEX Suggests Having Explicit Workflow and Agreements 

Posted on: January 26, 2021 09:25 AM | Permalink

Comments (1)

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@Al, this note reminds me of the CMMI levels. I've seen level 1 "coincidental and personality dependent" workflows and level 2 ones a few notches better, but not great. What is the quality of any improvements attempted before the ability to get data on the process?

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