Last week the second annual gathering of the Portuguese Scrum User Group took place in Lisbon. It was a great opportunity to meet with people that are actually doing agile projects in several different contexts. The meeting had a great set of speakers, including the co-author of Scrum Jeff Sutherland, Mitch Lacey, Ademar Aguiar and myself.
I had the opportunity to speak at this event!
The event started at 9a.m. with Jeff’s talk about Hyper productivity in Scrum teams. The room was crowded with around 150 people. This audience was particularly interesting because of the mix of experience vs new people. There were a lot of people that wanted to understand what is this thing called Scrum and the rest were a good mix of experienced Scrum users that wanted to learn and share experiences with each other.
My presentation was all about sharing experiences! OutSystems has been delivering agile projects since it started with a very unique ‘dual’ context. On one side of the spectrum we develop a software product – the Agile Platform – by a dedicated set of Scrum teams that work in OutSystems R&D department. On the other side of the spectrum, we have a team of Professional Services that delivers enterprise web applications using the Agile Platform following an agile approach. This team has delivered over 600 successful Agile projects! Pretty amazing and where I decided to focus my presentation…
The challenge was to identify from all this experience a couple of topics that would be of value for any team that delivers Scrum projects for the Enterprise. In my research for this presentation I came up with 4 major issues that the industry complains about when adopting Scrum (you can see the presentation slides here):
- How do we do fixed price projects? After all customers want to know how much will it cost before signing a contract, right?
- Where’s the Product Owner? Namely when you are delivering to an enterprise with little experience in Agile with multiple stakeholders.
- Dealing with immature teams. What is the most common challenge teams face in order to become self-organized?
- Handling distributed teams. The question is, can we deliver with distributed teams?
For each of these issues, I shared how we’ve overcome them with specific examples from our own projects and sometimes with references and examples from known authors in the Scrum community. Please feel free to check out my slides and share your thoughts on the challenges you and your organizations faces using your Agile approach.