“SCRUM” the prescription for “Project Procrastination”

“SCRUM” the prescription for “Project Procrastination”
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Scrum is an iterative and incremental agile software development framework for managing software projects and product or application development.(Source: Wikipedia)

I have worked in the software development world for over 15 years and saw various levels of management headaches in dealing with reaching milestones in a project. It could be an issue with delivering the agreed feature on a certain date or simply having problems in tracking where we are in the development cycle. Waterfall development life cycle is well adopted over the years and it is a natural fit for many software/application development project. However, it is also true that there are many gaps in achieving the efficiency from the team to complete the project.

We all know that it is the human common nature to delay or postpone the work until it becomes really important to complete. Well you may not be that kind of guy 🙂 but there is a general consensus in the world that  people procrastinate for “NO REASON”. Yes for no reason. They just don’t know. May be it is a habit!

So somebody had to come up with a clever way of making people work more efficient way by not making them feel that they are under constant tracking and make that as a widely adopted process. You may call it Agile, Iterative, Incremental or for that matter the SCRUM. This post doesn’t make negative or positive statements about the scrum practice, but it highlights the theme behind how this whole process is designed. (well that’s my understanding, I may be wrong. If you think otherwise please share your opinion(s). )

As I said in the beginning, procrastination costs tens and thousands of dollars to any size of the project. But it is less visible in manufacturing and other field based projects. Why, because workers have a set of steps and do constant revision of those steps to achieve better results in quality, output and so on and so forth. However software development is a field where one cannot envision the same kind of tracking mechanism like it does in a plant. Software workers / professionals / developers do work on something that include analysis, development, test and other time consuming tasks, like meetings (you know what I mean!). So now you ask where does the scrum practice help to handle the procrastination. Well it is built right in to the process. You will never know how it is dealing with it.

If you ever worked in a project that use scrum process for agile software development , you might remember those “standup meetings” (yes, you will stand up in a meeting !). Now you may also remember what happens in those meetings. You tell what you did yesterday and what you are going to do today and tell the group if there are any impediments. That will cover the procrastination, you don’t have to think too much about the other things. But for more insight visit this page … SRUM

Why I think SCRUM is a prescription for Project procrastination?
If we track our progress everyday and know what is happening today and let the team know that who is causing the problem (those impediments , you know!) you are not only working effectively you are making others to work with the group if they are procrastinating. And those weekly reviews, I must say, the best way to pull people out of their comfort zone to perform above average. Teams can do the same work in a month, why because the demo will be at the end of the month. But what if you say if the demo is tomorrow? Obviously , team will come with some innovative way to complete the work to do the demo.

So ultimately the underlying truth is a deadline, a planned demo early in the stage of the project, recognition of work and last but not the least the visibility of work, reduce the Project procrastination and ultimately project’s health will improve over time.




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