Guest Post: Using the power of “AND”

I was discussing the standup ritual the other day with some peers in some ScrumMaster training. We were discussing smells and anti-patterns in agile – and the discussion strayed to the team members that quickly belt out:


What value does this add to anyone? Did this … Doing that … No blockers. No respect, No care. This is a smell of lack of collaboration, lack of trust, lack of respect. I was thinking as were talking and wrote down this; 

we need to use the power of “And”.

“I’ve done _this work_ yesterday, I’m doing _this work_ today….”

and that means .. I’ll need your help, please Miss BA!”
and that means – Mr Tester, you will be busy today – but I can see you’re already busy – how can I help?”
and that means, can Miss BA please help with new requirements for my next work?”
and”, someone else might chip in – “I need your help Mr Dev!!”

Do you think this might help our standups to demonstrate a culture of respect? Reinforcing this concept – I found this great line in “Coaching Agile Teams” by Lyssa Adkins:
Fine-grain coordination:

Team members should have quick, focused interchanges during the stand-up. “Oh, I didn’t know you were planning to do that this afternoon. That means I need to change the order of things I was going to do to get you what you need. OK, I can do that. I’m glad you said something, though.”

About the Author: Jonathan Coleman is an Agile enthusiast at Suncorp. Jonathan’s journey has included many and varied roles, from large scale systems integration, to small in-house development projects, to BAU maintenance, to rolling out massive systems consolidation projects. Jonathan has worked as a consultant, for himself, and as a permanent staff member for large corporate.
Jonathan began to see the light in 2006 – when Agile and Scrum were introduced to him. He took some of these concepts into managing a small pseudo-IT team within the business, and really got it humming. The next steps came in managing delivery on large projects, working closely with coaches such as Craig Smith (Suncorp), Kane Mar and James Brett (Thoughtworks).
Jonathan is also an active & dedicated father, volunteers in coaching marriage and finance workshops, and runs a blog which addresses the deeper issues in life, love and child raising!

4 Responses to Guest Post: Using the power of “AND”

  1. Thorsten Korte (@s0771416) December 2, 2011 at 12:28 pm #

    Using the power of “AND”: #scrum #standup

  2. Kenneth van Rumste (@kennethvr) November 30, 2011 at 11:45 pm #

    3 questions in stand up meeting: Yesterday? Today? Problems? + Using the power of “AND”: #scrum #agile

  3. Naomi Karten (@NaomiKarten) November 30, 2011 at 4:08 pm #

    Better link for “Using the Power of AND” (previous link generated a 404)

  4. Jon Coleman (@jonathanrcolema) November 30, 2011 at 3:12 pm #

    Was published today, thanks to @scrumology

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