Learn how to get started estimating with story points and why you shouldn’t use time-based estimates.

The word estimate written on a wall and underlined
The word estimate written on a wall and underlined

Getting Started

If you are just starting out with Scrum, you are probably used to estimating in units of time (hours, days, weeks, months, years etc…). This is fine to start with, but estimating using units of time comes with a few problems:


People working in a company with different roles
People working in a company with different roles

Are you bored of the same old work every day? Do the people you work with not seem to care anymore? Do you want to do something about it?

Well you can — you can start up a guild, and today I’ll show you the first steps.

It might completely fail, you need to be prepared for that. You also need to be prepared for the huge upside; the potential success it could have.

I’m going to share with you the sort of challenges I’ve come across, what’s working well and what’s not.

Together we’ll use guilds to build a…


Image for post
Image for post
A Scrum Team performing Sprint Planning

I have to admit, as a Scrum Master, I struggled with this for a while, so I’m hoping it helps other Scrum Masters and teams out there get started.

If you are just starting out in Scrum and are not sure how to start running this meeting at all, or would like to update the way you are running it based on the November 2020 Scrum guide updates, then take a look on how you can have an effective Sprint Planning session.

Key Facts


A typewriter with a piece of paper that read “UPDATE”. Image by Pexels: Marcus Winkler
A typewriter with a piece of paper that read “UPDATE”. Image by Pexels: Marcus Winkler

It was Scrum’s 25th birthday on the 18th November 2020 and I managed to grab a spot on the Scrum Guide 2020 update webinar! We heard from speakers Jeff Sutherland, Ken Schwaber, J.J Sutherland, Dave West, Avi Schneier and Don McGreal. Here’s a brief overview of what’s changed.

1. Addition of the Product Goal

For me, the biggest change was the addition of the Product Goal. The Product Owner is accountable for making sure a Product Goal exists.

The Scrum guide has been updated to focus more on the why behind what we are doing; streamlining the communication channels between who is asking for something and…


Image for post
Image for post
Developers at a Daily Scrum

If you’re just starting out with Scrum, or you’ve been having Daily Scrum meetings for a while now and you just want to improve and see how other people do it, then read on… This article is for you!

We’ll look at “in-person” Daily Scrums and my experience with the more recent “remote” Daily Scrums.

Note — Some people also call this the Daily Standup (I used to be one of them), but in the Scrum guide it’s called the Daily Scrum, so I’m going with that from now on. That and the fact that a lot of us are…


Image for post
Image for post
When shall we schedule our Scrum rituals?

When you’re getting started with Scrum, one of the first things you are going to want to do (other than understand the 4 values of the Agile Manifesto, the 12 principles behind it and the 5 Scrum core values 😉) is to set up your Scrum rituals in your team calendar.

So today, let’s explore when you should run them in a typical 2 week Sprint, and the reasons behind that.

Recap of Scrum rituals

Before we get into when to put the meetings into a Sprint, here’s a recap of the 4 Scrum rituals that the Sprint encompasses:


As a Scrum Master, I use a variety of different tools to help facilitate Sprint Retrospectives. More recently, I’ve been using Mentimeter as a tool to gether feedback from the team.

It’s great! Just what I needed to spice things up.

In this article, I’d love to show you how I use Mentimeter in each Sprint Retrospective to quickly gather data from the teams whilst working remotely.

It went down so well the first time I used it, the team actually missed it and asked for it back when I changed to a new format the Sprint after.

Icebreaker

I always…


Photo by Sarah Trummer from Pexels
Photo by Sarah Trummer from Pexels

Hello! My name is Steve and I currently maintain a WordPress powered site agilebatman.com. I started this site early on during the first UK national lock down of the COVID-19 pandemic.

I had finally found the time to start writing about something I love doing; helping other people!

I had one simple goal…

Help others get better at agile product development (specifically with Scrum)

I think it’s gone pretty well so far. Actually better than I expected:

Helping with my full time job

Stephen Waring

I’m an energetic and enthusiastic Scrum master who loves music, cars, computers and helping other people succeed!

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store