Working Agreements in Scrum: What They Are and Why They Matter
Scrum is a popular project management framework used by software development teams to deliver high-quality products on time. Scrum teams follow a set of practices that enable them to work collaboratively, efficiently, and effectively. One of these practices is the use of working agreements.
Working agreements are a set of rules or guidelines that a Scrum team creates and agrees to follow. The purpose of working agreements is to establish a shared understanding of how the team will work together to achieve their goals. They help create a conducive environment for collaboration, communication, and productivity.
Here are some examples of working agreements that a Scrum team can create:
1. Respect everyone`s time: Members agree to arrive on time for meetings, be prepared, and avoid multitasking during discussions.
2. Listen actively: Members agree to listen to each other with an open mind, ask clarifying questions, and avoid interrupting.
3. Speak honestly and constructively: Members agree to share their ideas, opinions, and feedback in a respectful and constructive manner.
4. Embrace diversity: Members agree to respect and value each other`s differences in perspectives, backgrounds, and experiences.
5. Practice transparency: Members agree to share information, progress, and challenges openly and honestly, and avoid hidden agendas.
6. Celebrate successes: Members agree to acknowledge and appreciate each other`s achievements and contributions.
Working agreements should be created collaboratively by the Scrum team, ideally during their initial sprint planning meeting. All team members should have the opportunity to contribute and agree to the working agreements. The working agreements should be posted in a visible place and revisited regularly to ensure they are being followed and to make modifications if necessary.
The benefits of using working agreements in Scrum are many. They facilitate better communication, foster trust and mutual respect, reduce conflicts, and improve team morale. They also help the team to stay focused on their goals and work together more efficiently, which can lead to higher productivity and better outcomes.
In summary, working agreements are an essential element of the Scrum framework. They enable teams to establish a shared understanding of how they will work together, which helps to improve communication, collaboration, and productivity. By creating and adhering to working agreements, Scrum teams can achieve their goals more effectively and deliver high-quality products.