Scrum - The Art of Doing Twice the Work in Half the Time


How much do I want to read more? 8/10

This is the kind of book everyonw should read, or at least know the underlying principles. Pause, reflect and adapt.
Not only it applies in software development, but in all walk of life, in any project. Even in your life, on the broadest perspective: pause, reflect. Am I going in the direction I want?


“This extraordinary book shows a new way to simplify your life and work, increase your focus, and get more done in less time than you ever thought possible.”
—Brian Tracy, bestselling author of Eat That Frog! and Time Power

“This deceptively simple system is the most powerful way I’ve seen to improve the effectiveness of any team.”
—Leo Babauta, creator of Zen Habits

Preface

in 2005 the Waterfall method: was slow, unpredictable.
To overcome those faults, in 1993 I invented a new way of doing things: Scrum. adaptive, and self-correcting systems.

I discuss how we organize projects around small teams—and why that is such an effective way to work.
how we prioritize projects, how we set up one-week to one-month “sprints” to gain momentum and hold everyone on the team accountable, how we conduct brief daily stand-ups to keep tabs on what has been done and on the challenges that have inevitably cropped up.
continuous improvement and minimum viable products to get immediate feedback from consumers, rather than waiting until a project is finished.

CHAPTER ONE - The Way the World Works Is Broken

the FBI had been trying to update its computer system.
“It was not an easy decision,” Jeff says. He and his boss had decided to declare defeat and kill a program that had already taken nearly a decade and cost hundreds of millions of dollars.
It ran on gigantic mainframe computers that had been state of the art sometime in the eighties.

We had information that could have stopped 9/11. It was sitting there and was not acted upon.… I haven’t seen them correct the problems.… We might be in the 22nd century before we get the 21st-century technology.
In 2005 the FBI announced a new program, Sentinel. This time it would work. This time they’d put in the right safeguards, the right budget procedures, the right controls. They’d learned their lesson. The price tag? A mere $451 million. And it would be fully operational by 2009.
In March of 2010 the answer landed on Jeff Johnson’s desk. Lockheed Martin, the contractor hired to make the Sentinel system, had already spent $405 million. They’d developed only half of the project, and it was already a year late.

It wasn’t that these weren’t smart people.
It was because of the way people were working. The way most people work. The way we all think work has to be done, because that’s the way we were taught to do it.

Eisenhower once observed that planning for combat is important, but as soon as the first shot is fired, your plans go up in smoke.

A New Way of Thinking

The problem is that the rosy scenario never actually unfolds. All that effort poured into planning, trying to restrict change, trying to know the unknowable is wasted.
Scrum embraces uncertainty and creativity.
At its root, Scrum is based on a simple idea: whenever you start a project, why not regularly check in, see if what you’re doing is heading in the right direction, and if it’s actually what people want?
That’s what’s called an “Inspect and Adapt” cycle.
Every little while, stop doing what you’re doing, review what you’ve done, and see if it’s still what you should be doing and how you might do it better. It’s a simple idea, but executing it requires thought, introspection, honesty, and discipline.

Fixing the FBI

12