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Topics: Agile, Scrum
Mixing Agile Approaches



Dear PM community,

the PMI Agile Practice Guide states on page 31 the project specific blending of agile practices. The Scrum Guide issued November 2017 by Ken Schwaber and Jeff Sutherland stipulates on page 19 that "Scrum's roles, events, artifacts and rules are immutable" and "Scrum exists...as a container for other techniques, methodologies, and practices".

In this context, it appears to me that the mixing of XP techniques with scrum makes sense as indicated in the Practice Guide and it also fits with the Scrum Guide definitions, as the Scrum Guide defines itself a framework that does not define any specific techniques to be used.

But how about roles? The DSDM Agile Project Framework describes a broader set of roles and states "that DSDM is often used to provide the full "project" focus to complement Scrum's team focussed product development process.

What practical experience (bad or good) do we have in our community about this specific topic that can be shared and learned from? Is the Scrum Guide definition on roles too dogmatic restrictive or does it make sense to stick to it?
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Peter -

While I'm sure some companies benefit from a vanilla approach using a single delivery methodology, we know that there is no such thing as a best practice, hence tailoring and picking the right tool (and role!) for the right context matters.

No one methodology has proven to be universally applicable, hence the origin of Scrumban and other hybrids as well as the development of process decision making frameworks like Disciplined Agile.

Kiron
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1 reply by Peter Ambrosy
Jan 04, 2018 4:01 AM
Peter Ambrosy
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Dear Kiron,
big thanks for your valuable comments. You can sense from my original question that I am searching for some practical expierence on the tailoring topic, especially on the roles. Firstly, to me Scrum is a very straightforward, easy to understand development framework (not just for software), but hard to master in practise. Following Sergios advice to focus on roles description content, not soley rolen names is a very good advice, as this could be applied to a big extend to the role of the DevTeam in Scrum. There are many quite dogmatic views on the role topic out there, especially on the PM role within Scrum. Personally, I believe there are still good reasons for a PM role in a servant-leadership way of working for the Scrum team, especially for team starting with Scrum without having a lot of experience with this framework and within an organization that tries Scrum first time. What is your experience you can share here and we can learn from?



Peter, I agree with Kiron. There is no one strategy or methodology. It all depends on your organization and how you can adapt some practices to best meet the need.
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1 reply by Peter Ambrosy
Jan 04, 2018 4:23 AM
Peter Ambrosy
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Saby, many thanks for your comment. I realized that you are CSM. Can you share your experience with a servant-leadership oriented PM within a project applying Scrum? What are the do's and what are the dont's?



PMI Agile Practice Guide is about Agile applied to software.Agile is not about software and you can read about that inside the PMBOK GUide. I was co-author of DSDM versions 1 and 2 where I worked with people likie Arie Van Bennekum that time after was one of the Manifesto authors. Scrum is a framework, not a method then you can fill it as you want. DSDM and Scrum have roles defined into it. The important thing is to understand about roles definitions, not about roles names. I am working on that (including I was requested by the PMI to talk about that) from 2010 up to date. It has no sense to perform a debate about roles. Is about to understand the roles definition and to work on that. Just an example. In my actual work place we have five diffferent life cycles defined to do software and non-software things. The same people is working at the same time in predictive based initiatives and adaptive based initiatives using Scrum and DSDM.
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2 replies by Anish Abraham and Peter Ambrosy
Jan 04, 2018 12:12 AM
Anish Abraham
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I completely agree with you on this, Sergio.
Jan 04, 2018 4:15 AM
Peter Ambrosy
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Dear Sergio,
thank you very much indeed for your strong comments. I really appreciate. Each project is specific and needs tailoring to its benefit and to achieve expected outcome. What I am looking for in my question is to get some tailoring experience from PM practioners (even "sinful tailoring" in the scrum core framework understanding).
Sergio, you mention in your reply the PMI Agile Practice Guide is about Agile applied to software. Looking at the introduction part of the guide, it goes beyond software developement.



I agree with Sergio, role names are not important, only the totality of responsibilities these roles cover through effective role definition.



What I do like about Scrum another other "old" agile methodologies is that they do not distinguish between the individual "doers" contributing to the final solution. That helps to increase team-level ownership for work and encourages generalizing specialists.

However, they present a fairly rudimentary model which does not scale in enterprise contexts, hence the broadening of roles in most scaling agile frameworks.

Kiron



The team approach to a solution is good, provided that the performance measurements also assess teams rather than or at least in addition to individuals.
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1 reply by Peter Ambrosy
Jan 04, 2018 4:26 AM
Peter Ambrosy
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Dear Sante, thanks for your comment. Fully agree that the Scrum approach is a very good straight-forward approach to strive for productive, self-organized teams.



Great responses above. Really about what is required than coloring within the 'defined lines'. The ability to mold and adapt as needed. Great point on role definition over role name.
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1 reply by Peter Ambrosy
Jan 04, 2018 4:17 AM
Peter Ambrosy
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Craig, thanks for commenting. I am in sync with you on Sergios comment related to roles.



Jan 03, 2018 1:47 PM
Replying to Sergio Luis Conte
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PMI Agile Practice Guide is about Agile applied to software.Agile is not about software and you can read about that inside the PMBOK GUide. I was co-author of DSDM versions 1 and 2 where I worked with people likie Arie Van Bennekum that time after was one of the Manifesto authors. Scrum is a framework, not a method then you can fill it as you want. DSDM and Scrum have roles defined into it. The important thing is to understand about roles definitions, not about roles names. I am working on that (including I was requested by the PMI to talk about that) from 2010 up to date. It has no sense to perform a debate about roles. Is about to understand the roles definition and to work on that. Just an example. In my actual work place we have five diffferent life cycles defined to do software and non-software things. The same people is working at the same time in predictive based initiatives and adaptive based initiatives using Scrum and DSDM.
I completely agree with you on this, Sergio.



What I understand is, Scrum is a means to an end and not an end in itself - does not provide a ready solution, but only defines a boundry or a framework to help tailor specific solution as needed
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1 reply by Peter Ambrosy
Jan 04, 2018 4:30 AM
Peter Ambrosy
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Dear Roopa, thanks for your comment. Yes, it is a development framework and a container for techniques, methods, practices and in such respect very open. For example, XP is a perfect fit within Scrum.



Agree with Sergio
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