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Topics: Agile, Communications Management, Stakeholder Management
Practical Implementation of Agile Principle: Business people and developers must work together daily throughout the project.
The agile principle of "Businesspeople and developers must work
together daily throughout the project" is good in theory but hard in practice. I try to minimize the number of meetings I have on my projects and maximize time available to the team to actually work on project tasks. A technique I've found is to have a weekly scrum instead of daily 15-minute scrums and backlog refinement events by consolidating them into a single meeting, where we discuss updates on work in progress, identify any impediments, review upcoming work ensuring it is still on schedule, and groom a set number of backlog items to have at least two sprints worth of work ready to go.

Both the development team and business stakeholders attend this meeting, but I'm finding these meetings turn into too much tech talk which the business stakeholders don't care about or understand.

What are some effective practical approaches you have found to work incorporating the Agile principle of "Businesspeople and developers work together daily throughout the project"?
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It is important to understand what daily scrum (DS) means. If somebody run DS longer than 15 minutes then Scrum is not working for the initiative. DS is for putting on the table impediments then the Scrum Master work begins after the DS because impediments have to be solved. Here is where the collaboration takes a key role. People that can resolve the impediments must be available. That´s because is critical all they to be present in DS. Other important thing: there is not schedule at all. There is a set of sprints that can be used to understand the cadence about when something will be ready to use. On the other side, backilog refinement is just to understand if an item can be accomplished into the sprint or not but not to discusse or clarify the item. That has to be done in a daily basic. Then here comes the concept of self-organizing teams. So, my recommendation, is reviewing why you are using Scrum to create the solution in the context you are working on.
John -

There are two ideas captured in that principle - one about shortening feedback loops, and second about customer-centricity in everything we do.

If there is a way to accomplish these in some other manner, go for it.

The authors of the book Agile 2 - The Next Iteration of Agile did look at the principles of the Manifesto critically to call out things that we have learned over the past twenty years where adaptation or evolution is warranted. You may wish to read that book as it is illuminating.

When your team is self-organizing and collocated, your information radiators are up to date, and your developers have immediate access to each other and to business people whenever they need them, the daily standup starts to become redundant.

If that doesn't describe your situation (and maybe if it does), at a minimum, you need to know about impediments on a daily basis. The daily standup creates a standard time to raise them, minimizing interruptions throughout the day. Then, if you need more time to discuss a given impediment, you can meet with those that need to be involved, after the standup, so that you don't draw people in that aren't involved and have other things to do. If you are waiting days to address an impediment you are impeding the process.

What do your business stakeholders need? Do they want to be in a weekly meeting, or do they just want to be kept informed and have their interests represented? What can your PO do, outside of weekly meetings, to make sure he/she understands stakeholder interests and keep stakeholders informed?

Developers are going to discuss the technical aspects of stories during planning and backlog pruning. It can help with sizing. What do you need from the stakeholders during backlog pruning?
Citizen development is meant to bridge that very gap.

One technique I have used to help with dislocated teams is to have a Teams meeting open all day. This not only improves access to experts but it also facilitates communication by osmosis.

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