Getting it done your way — Are processes important to deliver your product?

Why do we use processes that are told to us when we join a company?Have you ever questioned what is the importance of using Scrum, Waterfall, Kanban and other management frameworks in your day to day tasks.

Most of us are trained to think that Process is the way to deliver your product, get visibility on what is going on in your project & etc.

I was one of those project managers, who blindly followed processes and invariably found it extremely difficult to deliver my builds on time.

Not saying, Scrum or any other framework is bad, but I failed to understand why we were using it.

There was a time when I had questioned why am I using SCRUM, is it really helping me and my team in reaching my project goals. I was always confused what is the relevance of using 1,2,3,5,8,13,21 effort points, how does it matter, what does the team understand ?!

I have personally been blinded by theories, books and gone ahead with implementation of processes and eventually seeing a failed result.

Most of us during process implementation

I really like SCRUM, the core concept of what it says I believe in it, however I don’t think it is necessary to use it in each and every project life cycle.

I have delivered more timely projects with quality without the hard and fast rule of blindly following a process or framework.

The irony is that not having a process is also a process, but at the end of the day what really works for you is what you should go for.

After I switched jobs, my new company didn’t have a set process to follow, they were very clear and focused on timely, good quality deliveries. Being from a process orientated company and background it was tough for me to change my mind set, as I was always dependent on processes to solve my problems.

But, thats not how problems are solved, processes are a base that help you in acheveing certain targets, most of us misconstrude the fact that is our bible for handling any situation that comes our way.

So, getting back to my expereince I didn’t have a process to fall back on, I felt lost initially but then I learnt to solve problems in a choatic situation by creating my own process around me.

I took the core concept from SCRUM — breaking down big chunks of work into smaller activities and created my own board on Trello. I didn't implement user stories completely, but instead I created my own version of it.

My own created process

My team who had never been exposed to a process oriented environment were baffled at the beginning, I knew if I start using “FUNDAS” theoretical words with them, effort points, effort estimations they would loose the zeal to perform.

So, instead I would write down a story we had to work on : Integrate Survey Form — Admin, the developer would be a check list on that card: Create Form for admin to enter questions and answers, Create Time box so admin can enter start and end date, Integrate CRUD Feature, Create APIs for survey form.

I would then add a time and date when they would finish their task on that card. Every time the developer finished working on his tasks he would cross it off the checklist, this way we all had clarity on the deliverables and an accountable system was created by them for their work.

Accountable system and Task breakdown created by the team

There were times, where I have had to invite tough clients on Trello board, but I must say that it helped all us in working together as a team. Now the client, only talks to me on trello and creates new boards like: BUG LIST BY SCOTT — 28th April. This also helps us in bug tracking on one platform as well as the client has complete visibility of what is going on.

I am happy that I am learning and developing my skills to work with and without processes.

The Key ingredient is to understand the DEPTH and question:

1.Why are we using this process/framework?

2.What is the core meaning of the process/framework?

3.Will this help me and my team in delivering projects on time?

Lol, a funny example of how we implement a process.

I understand that some companies have the hard and fast rule of using certain ways of working, which you cannot change but you can definitely question why they are using it, what is the core concept of the framework and see how it will help you in delivering your work.

Processes are not bad, they are in fact a base which we use to channelize our work and deliveries.

Even if you are in a processed oriented environment, you can still create your own after all it boils down to timely, quality delivery of your products.

Do let me know what your thoughts and experiences are in the comments below or feel free to get in touch with me on jinisarts@gmail.com

Thank You