Get over the dilemma on estimating a quite large Product Backlog

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A Product Backlog with a long list of Product Backlog Items (PBIs) is just an idle queue of ideas that has a non-zero cost to just keep around. Those PBIs are just sitting there idle adding no value.

If your program/portfolio has a culture of measuring lead time, then all these PBIs do help to increase the same considerably.

Let us not get into finding the reason behind why a large Product Backlog exists in the first place. (That can come as part of another article 😊)

Time to take a closer look at the Alternates

Assuming a large Product…

Understanding the work done by Gene Amdahl in the field of parallel computing

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Let us take this opportunity to explore a theory (involving Amdahl’s Law) one needs to be mindful of before even wanting to turn estimates into facts in the future.

Who is Mr Gene Amdahl?

Gene Myron Amdahl was an American computer scientist and primarily known as the brain behind Mainframe computers at IBM. He formulated Amdahl’s law, which states a fundamental limitation of parallel computing.

Understand why your estimates might go wrong and how to improve upon

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This incident happened in November 2019 around Diwali time in Chennai. A close friend of mine travelled from Bangalore to Chennai on an official visit and wanted to meet me before his return to Bangalore the same day.

We worked on a plan and somehow met at a common place with just a few hours left to reach Chennai Central for boarding his train.

Given the tight schedule, we could hardly speak in a relaxed mode nevertheless we had a lot to exchange. We had everything to discuss over a cup of tea standing near a tea shop.

With no…

Exploring what remains essential to the success of the Scrum Master role

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I had a chance to chat with my childhood friend after a long time on WhatsApp recently.

I was happy to hear about his career progression and family. He is working in the capacity of a technical consultant in his current assignment in Bangalore, India. His entire career seems to be in the e-commerce domain right from his career commenced in Software development.

At one point in time, he was puzzled to hear about my career path and different engagements I was part of over the past. …

Photo by John-Mark Smith on Unsplash

Alfred Hitchcock, a notable English film writer, director, and producer is known for his cameo appearances.

Wikipedia has created a separate page to list all his cameo appearances made so far. He made cameo appearances in 40 out of his 54 major films.

Remembering the essence of Scrum in crafting the Sprint Goal every Sprint

Image by Mohamed Hassan from Pixabay

I bumped in recently onto a video on Youtube showing how Mr. Vance Hinds got inspired by Comedian Bert Kreischer’s challenge to decide to make a change and how did he lose weight by saying ‘Yes’ to the challenge.

Exploring what the term ‘Best Practice’ mean in a Scrum Teams’ context

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Uncertainty is a way of saying there are very few things that we can control. And it is how we embrace the uncertainty that leads to some of the greatest transformations seen in recent times.

The thirst for best practices has never quenched among us humans. In fact, this thirst has only gone worse with more complexity and uncertainty experienced at work.

Is that a wrong thing to look out for Best Practices? No, it isn’t if not with Scrum.

We are doing complex work and dealing with…

Exploring the myth around stakeholder involvement as not required other than the Sprint Review in Scrum

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‘Stakeholders are not allowed to attend any Scrum event other than the ‘Sprint Review’ that occurs before the end of the Sprint’

How many are familiar with such similar misunderstandings around Stakeholder involvement in Scrum events?

I wasn’t sure since when I found this understanding baseless and with no rationale. But before that, even I took pride in keeping the Stakeholders away as much as possible from the Scrum Team holding onto such belief.

An interesting reference to the Scrum Glossary was also strengthening such belief for me:

“A person external to the Scrum Team with a specific interest in…

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This pandemic has created a lot of changes not only in my work-life but even in my personal life. One of the noteworthy changes in the usage of my cruiser bike. Mostly left untouched and idle these days with just basic care to keep it clean and check air levels in the tires.

I still remember the level of argument I had with my mom and spouse convincing them of going ahead with my decision to buy a cruiser bike of my choice a few years ago.

A lot of good memories traveling to distant places both with my spouse…

Understanding what ‘Pecking order’ is all about in a team’s construct

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

What does the term ‘Pecking Order’ stand for?

The basic pattern of social organization within a flock of poultry in which each bird pecks another lower in the scale without fear of retaliation and submits to pecking by one of higher rank broadly: a dominance hierarchy in a group of social animals.

How do you find the ‘Pecking Order’?

The pecking order is, literally, determined by pecking. Bigger, stronger, and more aggressive chickens bully their way to the top of the flock by pecking the others into submission with their pointy beaks. …

Ravishankar R

An avid learner and strong believer on humanizing work. A freelance writer and a sense maker with little exposure to Agile and Scrum

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