Tips for Effective Sprint

Tips For Effective Scrum Process

Scrum is an iterative software development and product management method that applies Agile principles. According to it, the project development is handled in short iterations to allow for business and engineering flexibility. The main idea behind Scrum and, ultimately,Agile is to continuously deliver value to customers.

The Sprint

The heart of Scrum is a Sprint, during which a useable and potentially releasable product Increment is created. Sprints can be one week to one month in length and happen one right after the other to keep projects moving. There are three events that happen with each Sprint:

● Sprint Planning – The Team decides what to work on for the current period

● Daily Scrum – The Development Team meets for 15 minutes (or less) every day of the Sprint to inspect progress toward the Sprint Goal.

● Sprint Review – The Team collaborates about what was done and adapts the Backlog as needed

● Sprint Retrospective – The Team discusses what went right, what went wrong, and how to improve


Set the Sprint Goal

• Ask the product owner to come up with the goal of the sprint

• It should be specific and measurable and the result of a discussion between the Product Owner and the Development Team.

Arrange planning preparation meeting

• Not a mandatory step, it can help a lot before the actual Sprint planning

• Can discuss all the tasks that you intend to include during the Sprint planning withyour team members.

• The key to success of such meeting is to make sure that every task is clear and precise

Prioritize tasks

• Once the goal is established, prioritize the stories that fulfill that goal.

• Some teams prefer completing the bigger tasks first and leave smaller ones for the end. Others prefer completing the smaller tasks first so they have more time for the complex ones.

• Team members can discuss and decide together what will be completed first

Create subtasks

• Once you decide on priorities and which tasks you want to complete, it is time to create smaller tasks or subtasks that will help you complete them.

• Some tasks are simply too complex and you will have to complete a series of smaller tasks to finish these complex ones

Don’t take on too many tasks

• While the Sprint goal should be a challenge for the team to fulfill, taking on too many tasks is counter-productive.

• If the team fails to deliver what they agreed, it can lead to frustration and disappointment.

Effective work days

  • To calculate the potential impact on sprint velocity, be sure to record the team’s days off,holidays or any other events that could affect the sprint delivery.


Remain standing

• Conventional meetings tend to stretch long, get boring and off topic when members are sitting comfortably. Standing up during these meetings ensures that the meetings are short, to-the-point and the energy level is high.

Your 3-question agenda

• The scrum meeting, in an agile development world, has every team member answer three simple questions : i) What did you accomplish since the last meeting?

ii) What are you working on until the next meeting?

iii) What is getting in your way or keeping you from doing your job?

Do it around the task board

• Have team members point at stories and tasks on the task board as they talk about their work. This keeps the focus on work for the sprint and makes it obvious when the talk becomes unrelated to the sprint.

Use a ‘Parking Lot’ for unresolved issues

• Define a ‘Parking lot’ and list down the issues which are to be dealt later.

• After the meeting gets over, schedule another meeting with only those members who are directly related with that particular issue.


Review the Sprint’s results.

● The PO reviews which items from the product backlog were completed during the previous Sprint and explains any that weren’t.

Discuss and demonstrate the work

● The team follows up by discussing their successes and pain points during the Sprint.

  • Then they hold a live demo of the finished software .Finally, the team answer any questions related to the Sprint’s Increment.

Update the status of the project

● The PO discusses the current state of the product backlog and restates the scope of the project going forward.

Collaborate on the plan ahead

● Finally, the team, stakeholders, PO, and any other meeting members work together to finalize next steps with respect to the insights gained throughout the meeting. For example, your PO may adjust the backlog or your team may implement new processes for future Sprints. After any changes are agreed upon, its important to review all timelines, budgets, and other anticipated events that could affect the project.


Start, stop and continue

● A good way to conduct a sprint retrospective is by asking each team member what they would start, stop and continue doing during the upcoming sprints.

● The start items are things that a team member thinks your team should add to the scrum process

● The stop items are things that a team member thinks your team should stop doing during the scrum process because it’s a waste of time of inefficient.

● The continue items are things that a team member thinks your team should

Take turns facilitating the scrum retrospective

● Usually, the scrum master is the one to facilitate the retrospective. Instead of this,you can ask each team member to take turns conducting the meeting.

● This way you won’t have the same kind of meeting every single time. Each person can facilitate the meeting on their own way and enjoy taking ownership

Choose a different location

● I t might do wonders to choose a different location for the retrospective once in a while. Leave the office and go somewhere else, like a park, boat, coffee bar, inspiring meeting locations.

● A completely different location can really help with boosting creativity at brainstorming and defining out-of-the-box ideas.

● continue doing. These are things that are not yet habits but should be habits.

Give kudos to the team

During the sprint retrospective, never forget to appreciate and thank your team members for the ways they have helped you or each other. This can have a lasting impact on the team and really help everyone to be engaged and motivated. You can also try to reserve a small space in the team room and capture all the kudos given to each team member during the scrum process. It helps them stay motivated and feel good when something positive is visible in the team area.



Go to the Home Page