What Is A Scrum?

One of the challenges, albeit a minor one, is understanding the language used in business analysis.  It’s not that I’ll be learning new concepts; these words are just words that mean stuff that already have words for them.

The other day I brought up the Scrum.  I was looking at the VP-Technology’s calendar and he had a meeting called “Scrum of all Scrums.”  One of my former team members brought up that scrum is a word used in rugby.  So, I looked it up and:

Scrum is an iterative and incremental agile software development framework for managing product development. It defines “a flexible, holistic product development strategy where a development team works as a unit to reach a common goal,” challenges assumptions of the “traditional, sequential approach” to product development, and enables teams to self-organize by encouraging physical co-location or close online collaboration of all team members, as well as daily face-to-face communication among all team members and disciplines involved.

A key principle of Scrum is the dual recognition that customers will change their minds about what they want or need (often called requirements volatility) and that there will be unpredictable challenges—for which a predictive or planned approach is not suited. As such, Scrum adopts an evidence-based empirical approach—accepting that the problem cannot be fully understood or defined up front, and instead focusing on how to maximize the team’s ability to deliver quickly, to respond to emerging requirements, and to adapt to evolving technologies and changes in market conditions.

I’m not sure if I could find a synonym in laymen’s terms to say that.  But it’s an interesting concept that will take some time for it to become natural what it means when I hear it.

But the concept of scrum apparently is larger than just a way for people and teams to collaborate.  There’s even a position called a Scrum Master.  And there are other concepts built into scrum, such as a sprint, sprint and product backlog, product increment, burn-down, etc.  Not sure how many of those terms are used here, but I plan on understanding the scrum process thoroughly anyway.

Received permission from Scrum alliance

Though at first I was a bit reluctant (and suspicious) about this new role, I do find learning these new concepts fascinating.  Even eagerly looking forward to adding them to my repertoire of skills, if not replacing my old skills with these new ones.

There’s even a scrum certification.  Several actually, if it ever got that serious.

The challenge for me will be to learn these new concepts like scrum while simultaneously employing them.  It’s like building a boat while drifting further into the ocean.  Where do I start?  What’s essential to grasp now versus amenities that are more optional?  If  anything can be considered an amenity.  How will I know I get it, am employing it correctly, or even doing it right at all?

Whatever.  I’ll get it down at some point.

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