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Agile Coaches' Corner shares practical concepts in an approachable way. It is for agile practitioners and business leaders seeking expert advice on improving the way they work to achieve their desired outcomes. If you have a topic you'd like discussed, email it to, or tweet it with #agilethoughtpodcast.

Jun 12, 2020

Joining Dan Neumann this week is frequent guest, Quincy Jordan! Quincy has been with AgileThought for just over two years as a principal transformation consultant and agile competency lead. Prior to AgileThought, Quincy was the transformation lead for Pivotal’s Atlanta office, where he consulted with clients to help them reach enterprise scale. He has also served as a principal consultant and agile coach at for over six years.


In this episode, Dan and Quincy are talking about what it takes to get from zero to ‘start’ as a Scrum team. They speak about the different types of starting, the strong values needed for getting started, the foundational pieces you need a strong understanding of, some of the bad practices and anti-patterns teams fall into when getting started, and additional key pieces to keep in mind after a Scrum team is established.


If you want to know how to go from zero to start — stay tuned in!


Key Takeaways

Scrum values that are key to getting started:

Courage is needed to get to the point of deciding to start

A willingness to try something that you haven’t tried before

Adaptation is crucial

Be comfortable moving forward in the face of ambiguity

Being okay with starting before everything is “perfect” or “right” (because you can’t ever get it “right” if you don’t start at all)

Key points and understandings to getting to ‘start:’

Clarify the roles in Scrum

Refer to the Scrum Guide to understand the foundations of the framework

Determine who is going to fill the role of Scrum Master and the Scrum Product Owner

It is critical to understand that the Scrum framework is already so scaled down that you really can’t take anything out

If you do not have enough team members to separate the roles out it is possible to start, but not recommended

Having the product backlog in place helps keep the team focused — especially early on (because it helps the team know what they’re headed toward is truly producing value)

Start with the questions: Do we have a team? Do we have a group of people who are committed to doing the work? Are they cross-functional enough to do the actual increment at the end of every sprint? Do they have a product backlog that helps identify what to do?

Take note of what isn’t in the Scrum guide

You don’t need to forecast four or five sprints out (too much will change before you get to that point); if you have enough for one or two sprints you can start

Camaraderie is an essential part of doing Scrum

Leadership support/buy-in is not 100% necessary to get started

You should have a commitment to allocate a cross-functional group of people to the effort and allow them to focus

The team needs to collaborate and work together; you can’t have islands within the team

Key pieces to understand after getting to ‘start’:

A way to gain leadership support/buy-in is to get some early, quick wins and show the value of what your Scrum team is doing

When the leadership support is there, the onus is on the team to make sure that they’re communicating well with leadership

Communicate well with leadership by not only letting them know what’s great but letting them know the challenges as well

Frequent communication within the team outside of the daily Scrum is crucial


Mentioned in this Episode:

The Scrum Guide


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