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Book Notes from 'Scrum - The Art of Doing Twice the Work in Half the Time' By Jeff Sutherland

Time and Time Again

  • What makes Scrum so revolutionary.
    • You get more stuff done - faster and cheaper - twice the work in half the time.
  • Eelco - redid his house in 6 weeks
    • Decided to make the contractors use Scrum
    • They had weekly projects they had to move to Done
    • They had a board full of sticky notes listing out the tasks to be completed.
    • It made them think and communicate about the project in a different way than they had before.
    • The main thing the stand ups did -
      • Removed dependencies
      • Any construction project a lot of time is spent waiting for one part of the job to be done before the next can begin.
  • Daily Stand up meeting was to get all those people in a room where they could quickly figure out how to work together as a team.
  • Think about your job
    • How much of your job is wasted while you're waiting for someone else to finish their work.
    • For information to be delivered
    • You're doing to many things at once.



  • Time is Finite - Treat it that way: break your work down into what can be accomplished.
  • Demo or Die: at the end of the sprint have something that’s done - something that can be used.
  • Throw Away Your Business Card:
  • Everyone Knows Everything: communication saturation accelerates work.
  • One Meeting a Day: fifteen minute stand up. See what can be done to increase speed.


Waste Is A Crime

  • The heart of Scrum is Rhythm.
  • We're pattern seekers, driven to seek out rhythm in all aspects of our lives.
  • What scrum does is create a different kind of pattern.
  • It accepts that we're habit-driven creatures, seekers of rhythm - somewhat predictable
  • 'What if I can take human patterns and make them positive instead of negative.
  • Waste that infects our work, the cancer that eats our productivity, our organizations, our lives
  • When I go into a company I find that 85% of the effort is wasted
    • Only a sixth of the work done actually produces something of value.
  • Taiichi Ohno - Toyota
    • Waste is a crime against society more than business loss.
    • Three types of waste
      • Muri : waste through unreasonableness
      • Mura : waste through inconsistency
      • Muda : waste through outcomes
    • Demings PDCA cycle
      • Plan, Do, Check, Act
      • Plan - avoid Muri
      • Do - avoid Mura
      • Check - avoid Muda
      • Act - the will and motivation and determination to do all that.


One Thing At A Time

  • People brag about their ability to multi-task
  • The ability to juggle seems so attractive.
  • The people that multi-task the most just can't focus
  • How painful multitasking is to your brain, how much it slows you down even when you think it speeds you up.
  • Simply doing tasks one at a time, instead of switching  from one context to another - half the amount of time it takes


Half Done Isn't Done At All

  • Scrum takes a lot of its thinking from the Japanese manufacturing model
  • The United States - this model is interpreted as Lean Manufacturing
  • The idea is to eliminate as much waste as possible
  • Doing half of something is essentially, doing nothing
  • Scrum is a rhythm to the work.
  • Done implies a complete and deliverable product that can be used by a customer.
  • If you are tying up a huge amount of value in things that aren't delivering value - you wont have those resources to do other things.
  • Jobs that arent done and products that arent being used are two aspects of the same thing:
    • Invested effort with no positive outcome.


Do It Right the First Time

  • Dr. James Womack - Lean Enterprise Institute at MIT
    • Studied manufacturing
    • Toyota - when a problem shows up on the floor - every worker has the ability to stop the whole line
    • When that happens - everyone swarms to solve the problem.
      • Not to yell at the guy - but to solve the problem.
    • There is a reason that toyota became the number one car manufacturer.
      • They did it right the first time.
    • The process is continuously improved - the right moment to fix a problem is when its observed - not after the fact
  • Do things right the first time.
  • Fix problems as soon as you notice them - if you don’t you will pay for it.
Posted on Saturday, July 16, 2016 8:39 AM Scrum | Back to top

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