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Living the Agile Way

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Living the Agile Way

Is work consuming your life? Use Agile methods and Scrum ceremonies, like Backlog Refinement and Sprint Planning, to bring back some work-life balance.

· Agile Zone ·
Free Resource

In your fast moving life, do you feel like a machine?

You wake up, get ready, have breakfast, go to the office, come home, have dinner, and sleep. You do the same thing every day. Do you feel you have lost the human touch in you? Can Agile help you get the touch back?

Come, let's find out.

Jim, a New York resident, is living the machine life. Busy with work, he is clueless as to what his family is doing. What are the kids up to? He'd been planning to go on a vacation for 6 months but never even got time to decide on where to go. Also, he was planning to buy a new car, but never got the time to look at any.

Let's see now how Agile, specifically Scrum framework, can help him get the human touch back.

To start working on something the primary requirement is a backlog.

The backlog is a list of to-do items. The backlog is provided by the Product Owner. In this case, the Product Owner would be Jim.

Jim's backlog would look something like this.

  • Plan a vacation.
  • Buy a car.
  • Take his son to the zoo.
  • Take his wife on a long drive.

Now that we have the backlog ready, we need to proceed with the Scrum ceremonies.

Sprint Planning: A Sprint is a time-box in which we plan to complete a few items from our backlog.

So in Jim's case, he and his family sit down and pick out the priority items from his backlog (the so-called wish list) and see what they can do in a Sprint of a week or two. The output of this will be the Sprint Backlog or the items Jim plans to complete in the current Sprint time frame.

Daily Scrum: In the Daily Scrum we discuss the following things:

  • What did we do yesterday?
  • What will we do today?
  • Any impediments or help required.

So what will Jim's family discuss?

They tell each other what all they did yesterday and what they plan to do today.

The benefit of this is that the family will realize how much work Jim does in his office. Jim will understand what challenges his wife faces. The son will get a chance to narrate the stories from his school and play time. This will bring the family together.

Also, each one of them can tell each other if they need their presence on some particular day. Maybe at school or some place.

Backlog Refinement: The family can sit together and decide what items from the backlog will take priority and decide what to complete next.

Sprint Review: The family can check whether they have completed all the items on their priority list.

Sprint Retrospective: The family can sit together to discuss what went well and what needs to be improved. Here the family will realize what things they were missing before.

Conclusion: We unknowingly are always Agile in our life. We are always responding to changes.

Once Jim and his family start becoming Agile they will become closer and will be able to cherish the small moments with the family. This way they will be able to complete most of the items in personal life and will be able to maintain work-life balance as well.

FYI...He did go on that vacation after all.

agile approach ,agile ,work life balance

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