How Agile Methods and Scrum can save your team from complete chaos

Emails are inundating your inbox. You’re constantly being rushed to a meeting. You’ve lost count of how many coffees you’ve had and you’ve barely had time to catch a breath.

You feel stressed and agitated. You’re overwhelmed with the never-ending task list.

You check your watch. It’s 10:30 am. Uufff, It’s going to be a long day.

I guess this is why they call it work. But what if it didn’t have to be this way? What if your work were organized to be more effective?

Research shows that working ourselves into the ground is actually counterproductive and that it’s not about working 9–5 or even staying overtime. It’s about making our workplace more balanced by prioritizing high-value tasks over low-value tasks.

We shouldn’t be working harder, we should be working smarter. In this article, I’m going to talk about how Agile methods and Scrum can revitalize your workplace and give your life the balance that it’s been missing.

What does Agile and Scrum mean for your workplace?

Most companies, especially software development companies need a system to effectively plan and deploy projects. There are many methodologies to choose from but Agile and Scrum have been the most successful.

The agile software development methodology is different from other methodologies because instead of solely planning at the beginning, agile uses an iterative approach where planning, testing and development happen at the same time. All this happens during project cycles called sprints. This approach requires lots of communication between teams and customers to prioritize the customer’s satisfaction.

Scrum is the framework built for agile’s work mindset. Scrum is structured to get work done knowing that there will be changes throughout the project. Since scrum is iterative, it’s the most effective approach for projects that are quickly changing. Scrum’s process is cyclical so teams can quickly finish projects with high value while constantly looking to improve after each sprint.

How to make your team agile enough

Agile is based on 4 values and 12 principles from the agile manifesto. Agile uses many processes depending on your types of projects and work with these values and principals in mind.

Scrum framework:

The people that make scrum happen:

– Product owners’ goals are to ensure that the vision of the project is met. They communicate with everyone involved.

– Scrum Masters’ focus on guiding their team to follow scrum’s framework.

– Scrum team are in charge of getting things done. There are no distinct roles within the team and normally is around 5 to 7 people.

Scrum Steps:

1.The product backlog is basically a To-do list for the team to refer to. This is put together by the product owner.

2. Sprint planning is the phase where the scrum master prioritizes which tasks should get done during the sprint. The sprint goal is called an increment.

3. Sprint is the time that the team works together to reach its increment. The typical timeframe is around 2 weeks long.

4. Daily Scrum is a 15-minute stand-up meeting where everyone quickly shares what they’re currently working on.

5. Sprint Review is the end of the sprint meeting to inspect the work accomplished before releasing the product.

6. Sprint Retrospect is the time where the team discussed what went well and what went wrong during the sprint so there will always be an improvement for the upcoming sprints.

Scrum is a very simple and cyclical method to get work done. This two-week sprint window can really get your team to work together and focus on a communal goal.

By implementing agile’s main goals: transparency, teamwork, communication and iterative progress your workplace can get back to what it does best.

Jaya uses Agile methods and Scrum for the sake of relationships

At Jaya, we care about our relationships. Our work relationships. Our client relationships. And of course our personal relationships. When the workplace is in equilibrium our team is in equilibrium.

By adopting agile methods and scrum to our work structure we’ve been able to truly focus on these relationships. By having more structure and accountability we are able to devote our time to build connections with our clients.

What we love most about agile methods is the emphasis on face-to-face interactions. At Jaya, we have an open concept workplace to invite cross-functional communication. We strive to have a creative and interactive environment so our team can offer our clients their best work.

Why choose to be Agile?

The workplace can feel like a war-zone. Everyone’s struggling to keep up with the competition and we’re all focused on our own survival.

We need to realize that work shouldn’t be this stress infused battle every day. We need to realize that we don’t need to be constantly drowning in work to feel like we’re productive. By adopting the agile methodology mindset and scrum framework you and your team can finally put down that white flag and take back your workplace.

Agile and scrum can give your team accountability and simplicity. The sooner your team masters these methods the sooner you’ll have more peace at work. Our world is constantly changing and the workplace isn’t any different. With agile, you won’t just survive, you’ll succeed in these volatile environments.

Agile’s focus on adaptivity is key for a healthy workplace. Everyone is talking about work/life balance like it’s a fantasy, but why not make it a reality?

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