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Topics: Agile, Scrum
Mixing Agile Approaches
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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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Jan 03, 2018 9:49 AM
Replying to Kiron Bondale
...
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
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?
...
1 reply by Kiron Bondale
Jan 04, 2018 9:40 AM
Kiron Bondale
...
Peter -

Scrum is a dramatic shift for most teams, so I've rarely seen a situation where the role changes can occur overnight. Given this, existing roles like PMs, BAs and so on will need to use their soft skills to help with the transition.

The Scrum guide provides a great basis for establishing a new team with a new product, but the lack of guidance on how to move from current state to their envisioned end state is a key contributor to hybridized approaches.

Kiron
Network:280



Jan 03, 2018 1:47 PM
Replying to Sergio Luis Conte
...
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.
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.
...
1 reply by Sergio Luis Conte
Jan 04, 2018 9:18 AM
Sergio Luis Conte
...
Peter, sorry but if you take into account the introduction then you are lost. I know about what I am talking because I was part. In fact, there is a big lack of integration between the PMBOK Guide and the Agile Practice Guide. That is because the Agile Practice Guide was created in isolation by a group with other group that belongs to the Agile Alliance (which is software oriented only). On thing that could help people to understand the lack of integration is that inside the PMBOK Guide you will not find any reference to agile something while in the practice guide you will. The example in the Agile Practice Guide about the drug project in section 3 was taking from one of my personal experiences.While this example was included to demostrate how Agile practices can be used with any type of life cycle when you read the whole guide you will find is software oriented. That is the same when you tried to take the PMI-ACP certification. I heard from the PMI that it was some thing that will be fixed in the future.
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Jan 03, 2018 8:02 PM
Replying to Andrew Craig
...
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.
Craig, thanks for commenting. I am in sync with you on Sergios comment related to roles.
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Jan 03, 2018 10:54 AM
Replying to Saby Waraich
...
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.
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?
Network:280



Jan 03, 2018 5:43 PM
Replying to Sante Vergini
...
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.
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.
Network:280



Jan 04, 2018 2:22 AM
Replying to Roopa Deepak
...
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
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.
Network:1552



Jan 04, 2018 4:15 AM
Replying to Peter Ambrosy
...
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.
Peter, sorry but if you take into account the introduction then you are lost. I know about what I am talking because I was part. In fact, there is a big lack of integration between the PMBOK Guide and the Agile Practice Guide. That is because the Agile Practice Guide was created in isolation by a group with other group that belongs to the Agile Alliance (which is software oriented only). On thing that could help people to understand the lack of integration is that inside the PMBOK Guide you will not find any reference to agile something while in the practice guide you will. The example in the Agile Practice Guide about the drug project in section 3 was taking from one of my personal experiences.While this example was included to demostrate how Agile practices can be used with any type of life cycle when you read the whole guide you will find is software oriented. That is the same when you tried to take the PMI-ACP certification. I heard from the PMI that it was some thing that will be fixed in the future.
...
1 reply by Peter Ambrosy
Jan 04, 2018 1:39 PM
Peter Ambrosy
...
Sergio, big thanks for the clarification from your side. Always good to have somebody with some deeper insights you can learn from what is in fact some of the agile essentials.
Network:731



Jan 04, 2018 4:01 AM
Replying to Peter Ambrosy
...
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 -

Scrum is a dramatic shift for most teams, so I've rarely seen a situation where the role changes can occur overnight. Given this, existing roles like PMs, BAs and so on will need to use their soft skills to help with the transition.

The Scrum guide provides a great basis for establishing a new team with a new product, but the lack of guidance on how to move from current state to their envisioned end state is a key contributor to hybridized approaches.

Kiron
...
1 reply by Peter Ambrosy
Jan 04, 2018 1:42 PM
Peter Ambrosy
...
Dear Kiron,
yes, you are right. I can confirm your statement, as I am by myself in the middle of such dramatic change for the teams....We need to go step by step - just incremental and adaptive and following the mantra: Inspect and adapt, Inspect and adapt, Inspect and adapt,.....
Network:280



Jan 04, 2018 9:18 AM
Replying to Sergio Luis Conte
...
Peter, sorry but if you take into account the introduction then you are lost. I know about what I am talking because I was part. In fact, there is a big lack of integration between the PMBOK Guide and the Agile Practice Guide. That is because the Agile Practice Guide was created in isolation by a group with other group that belongs to the Agile Alliance (which is software oriented only). On thing that could help people to understand the lack of integration is that inside the PMBOK Guide you will not find any reference to agile something while in the practice guide you will. The example in the Agile Practice Guide about the drug project in section 3 was taking from one of my personal experiences.While this example was included to demostrate how Agile practices can be used with any type of life cycle when you read the whole guide you will find is software oriented. That is the same when you tried to take the PMI-ACP certification. I heard from the PMI that it was some thing that will be fixed in the future.
Sergio, big thanks for the clarification from your side. Always good to have somebody with some deeper insights you can learn from what is in fact some of the agile essentials.
...
1 reply by Sergio Luis Conte
Jan 04, 2018 1:52 PM
Sergio Luis Conte
...
You are welcome. At the end I am participating trying that people take a look to the not telling story about Agile because it is not commonly known. My intention is to encourage people to search more, not to keep what i wrote without searching about it. Time ago Heidi Araya published the best I read: https://www.projectmanagement.com/blog-pos...telling-history
Network:280



Jan 04, 2018 9:40 AM
Replying to Kiron Bondale
...
Peter -

Scrum is a dramatic shift for most teams, so I've rarely seen a situation where the role changes can occur overnight. Given this, existing roles like PMs, BAs and so on will need to use their soft skills to help with the transition.

The Scrum guide provides a great basis for establishing a new team with a new product, but the lack of guidance on how to move from current state to their envisioned end state is a key contributor to hybridized approaches.

Kiron
Dear Kiron,
yes, you are right. I can confirm your statement, as I am by myself in the middle of such dramatic change for the teams....We need to go step by step - just incremental and adaptive and following the mantra: Inspect and adapt, Inspect and adapt, Inspect and adapt,.....
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