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23
votes
8answers
11k views

How to apply Scrum in fixed date, fixed budget project?

Considering that we work on a project with fixed deadlines and fixed budget and we use Scrum: what are best practices we should use to make this setup successful? Since Scrum wasn't directly designed ...
22
votes
12answers
10k views

How to motivate a team when you have nothing to offer but equity?

I recently got into the whole startup scene, and I was hired as CTO for an early-stage startup. I've got a fair bit of engineering experience, but when it comes to management, I'd definitely be in the ...
22
votes
15answers
3k views

Which skill set is necessary for a project manager?

I know that this question depends a lot in the environment the Project Manager works in, but still want to know on the average, which skill/skill set that need to be focused more than others. To name ...
22
votes
11answers
17k views

How can I map stakeholders without offending anyone?

I want to map the stakeholders on a project to help form a communication plan. The typical power vs. interest matrix (below) is very helpful, but I fear I can't store it in a document others may read....
22
votes
7answers
17k views

Is Certified Scrum Master valuable?

What is the value in Certified Scrum Master certifications? I'll be quite honest in saying that I've never put a lot of thought into such certifications, but it seems like if you are interested in ...
22
votes
6answers
117k views

PMP Experience Documentation [closed]

I am looking to take the PMP exam in a year or so, and see that one of the requirements is "at least three years of project management experience, with 4,500 hours leading and directing projects." ...
22
votes
7answers
1k views

How to handle CEO “priority” requests that affect existing client deadlines?

Our team(s) have agreed upon timelines both by the team themselves and the clients, including a bit of extra padding in case of any mistakes. However, the CEO of the company consistently sends ...
22
votes
5answers
20k views

What is the difference between Scrum and XP?

Everything is in the title: What is the difference between Scrum and eXtreme Programming? Is it possible to have a simple but explicit explanation?
22
votes
6answers
3k views

What role is there for a PM on an Agile project?

Back before agile was everywhere, having a PM on all but the smaller projects was considered essential. Now, only the largest projects have people assigned to just in a PM capacity. I guess I have ...
22
votes
3answers
39k views

Sprint Backlog vs Product Backlog

I was always under impression that Sprint Backlog is part of Product Backlog -> it's impossible to add anything into Sprint Backlog without affecting Product Backlog However, according to one of the ...
22
votes
8answers
1k views

How do you deal with constant interruptions coming from outside the team?

As one of our teams was restructured completely (6 our of 8 new people in the last 2 months) and their knowledge base is now very weak, I notice constant daily interruptions from them. We share the ...
22
votes
5answers
4k views

Transitioning into a project management role [closed]

Many project managers start out as strong individual contributors, and end up as accidental project managers (filling in while the project manager is away, filling a need where a project manager is ...
22
votes
6answers
17k views

What role should a technical architect play in Project Management?

I've recently been given the role of Technical Architect in my organization (I will also be project managing some projects and developing if the 10-12 senior developers are all too busy). I'm ...
22
votes
4answers
7k views

Should defects flow through the Kanban board, or should they be tracked as issues?

One of the things that I'm still trying to wrap my head around is defect tracking. Should we put defects on the Board and track them alongside the other items (new features, refactoring work etc), ...
22
votes
3answers
9k views

How can a team working on research based items work in an Agile project?

My R&D organization is following an Agile (Scrum) development methodology. One of the development teams is working mostly on items that are really problematic in terms of the certainty during the ...
21
votes
8answers
7k views

How can a Scrum team work with a Waterfall team

My Scrum team needs an API to retrieve data. It's not overly complicated, essentially its just one request that gets sent to the API and then the API returns some data. This is the end of the journey. ...
21
votes
13answers
16k views

Is it correct to refer to a 'post mortem' session even for successful projects?

It might be a silly question for non-latin speakers, but it's odd to hear about a post-mortem meeting for a successful project since this expression means 'after death'. I know that this can be also ...
21
votes
8answers
5k views

How do I overcome a bottleneck in a team's process, when what people are telling me doesn't match what I see

I started a new job a few months ago as a scrum master. The team was and still is having problems completing their tasks during the sprint. Initially the problems seemed to be tasks that were too ...
21
votes
10answers
6k views

Help - Technical team does not want to work in agile way

I am a Product Owner on a Scrum Team whose developers do not want to embrace work in an agile, incremental fashion. Simple example: the customer currently has to contact us to create users each time ...
21
votes
23answers
59k views

“Start to finish” dependency example?

Can you give me an example of a Start to Finish dependency? Wikipedia describes it like this: Start to finish (SF) A SF B = B can't finish before A starts
21
votes
6answers
8k views

What is a failed sprint?

A sprint has just ended. All stories, but one were done by the software engineers. Should the sprint be labeled as 'failed' because of the story that was not completed? What exactly is a failed sprint?...
21
votes
7answers
8k views

How to apply daily stand-up meetings with a large team on multiple projects

Background There are: 4 .Net Developers 4 PHP Developers 2 QA Specialists 2 Integration Specialists 2 Analysts 3 PMs 11 Projects in active development. None are trivial. Some are programs with sub-...
21
votes
11answers
9k views

How to take minutes of meeting effectively?

I have one on one meetings with manager and senior members of our company. They raise points in meetings and I note down on paper. Can anyone tell me what are the formats to note minutes of meetings? ...
21
votes
6answers
2k views

How do you manage technical debt?

In real world, business initiatives always take higher priority as there are associated ROIs and deliver something tangible to the users. But there are technical initiatives and projects that need to ...
21
votes
6answers
4k views

In scrum should incomplete stories be re-estimated or does the original estimate get burned down when it's finally completed?

If I have a story that's been estimated at 10 story points and we don't manage to complete it in a sprint how do you handle estimates for the sprint in which it's next included (assuming it gets ...
21
votes
5answers
31k views

Definition of Project Success

How do you define a successful project? Is success contingent on the overall value that the product or service yielded for the organization? If the project was successfully delivered, that is the ...
21
votes
7answers
50k views

How to measure quality in a software development project?

Quality is one of the four key project constraints, which need to be planned and controlled by a project manager during the entire project lifecycle. In order to plan and control it the PM, first of ...
21
votes
3answers
14k views

How to organize knowledge within a wiki?

Using wikis as a knowledge database becomes more popular since a few years. But now I realized that most of the knowledge is lost because: articles are out-dated there is more than one page for the ...
21
votes
6answers
2k views

Is Software Architecture still Relevant in Agile ?

Agile focuses on developing workable codes from small user stories. Pair programming encourage developers to pair up, actively engage with one another to come up with the best solution for the problem....
21
votes
1answer
1k views

Fogbugz Evidence Based Scheduling

Has any one in the community used 'evidence-based scheduling' by Fogcreek's fogbugz to come up with estimates and schedules on your real projects? I understand the basis of this technique (well ...
20
votes
9answers
8k views

How should a Scrum master handle disagreements about story-point estimates in Scrum?

For example : Some see its userstory (e.g. 2 points) and others see technical complications and judge that the story should be 20 points. The 2-point voters say, "I understand your opinion, but don't ...
20
votes
5answers
20k views

What is the role of a QA tester on a Scrum team?

I've recently added a QA tester to our new Scrum team. The tester comes with a lot of experience in automated testing and is capable of scripting, light coding, etc. He will be using automation tools, ...
20
votes
6answers
5k views

Running a sprint from Wednesday till Wednesday

Currently we have three teams who start their two week sprint on Monday and end it on Friday. We have some team-members who have every Friday off. Planning sprint reviews on Thursdays or earlier is ...
20
votes
6answers
4k views

What value do project managers provide a software development team?

What value does a project manager bring? How do they benefit the technical members of the team who do the work (e.g., the software developers)? Why should software developers prefer to have a ...
20
votes
10answers
3k views

Clients do not respond. How to manage that?

I am currently a Project Manager at web development company working on always more than one project (rarely big project for more than 3 months and most often small project up to 1 month). As we open ...
20
votes
5answers
2k views

Managing projects across time zones

When managing a project that involves participants across the globe, it is quite manageable for any two timezones to meet (someone will be at the end of their shift while someone is starting theirs), ...
20
votes
5answers
5k views

Why are estimates treated like deadlines?

This is one thing that I've always taken as a given, the "status quo" in my line of field (software development) but never really gave it a deep thought. And even now that I do, I still don't ...
20
votes
4answers
9k views

Difference in responsibilities between lead developer and project manager for support workload

Full disclosure: I am working as a lead developer for a team of around 6 developers, not as a project manager. But this seemed like a good place to ask. Background: Recently the team is covering more ...
20
votes
5answers
310 views

How do you get the most value out of a PM who can do everything?

This excellent post by Joel struck home (The gorilla with too many hats), and made me think. Many project managers started out as individual contributors, and may have strong technical skills in a ...
20
votes
8answers
3k views

Is it possible to over-communicate in project team?

Communication issues in projects are very common. Often the advice we give others or get from others is to communicate more and to be more transparent and most of the time it works. The question is ...
20
votes
7answers
15k views

How can we manage multiple projects, as one small scrum team?

I know Agile came about as a group of 'adaptive software development' methods, where Scrum is one of them. Some background: We are an innovative web agency, which implies design and development. We ...
20
votes
10answers
9k views

What alternatives are there to a weekly status report to collect team members' progress on assigned work?

Each week I issue a personalised email to everyone in the business (there are only 17 of us) with the following headings: Can you provide a brief status report for this week based on your assigned ...
20
votes
2answers
1k views

SCRUM Sprint and tasks/user stories that cannot fit into a sprint!

Say I have an Epic that is estimated to take 3 sprints to do. And the Epic is broken down into A to Z tasks/user stories. Problem is, to do B, we need A, to do C we need B, etc.... And in sprint ...
19
votes
17answers
1k views

Is development experience required to become a PM in the IT sector?

This question has been stuck in my head for a long time. To become a project manager in the IT sector, should one have development experience, or a strong focus on general project management skills? ...
19
votes
13answers
43k views

How do you name Sprints in Scrum?

I was wondering if it's a good idea to name Sprints with user-friendly names instead of using numerals like Sprint 1, Sprint 2, etc. Are there best practices or standards for naming the Sprint after ...
19
votes
8answers
4k views

Rewards or Penalties? Or just rewards?

What motivational mechanism works more effectively - penalties or rewards? I'm also interested to know whether penalties are used in modern software development teams. If they are - in what form? ps. ...
19
votes
10answers
4k views

How to manage employees leaving the company?

Some time ago, the company had to downsize due to difficulties, now things are going better, but employees are still leaving the company. There is no budget to increase the salary or benefits right ...
19
votes
4answers
983 views

Managing Without Meetings

What techniques have you used or would you recommend to update project status or resolve project conflicts other than meetings? This is a question from a company with a culture of meetings.
19
votes
6answers
1k views

How to Create Better Communicators on Your Team?

I work with a team who is distributed. Most of our staff works remotely. As a result, communication is much more important. The team consists of managers, supervisors, marketing personnel, web ...
19
votes
7answers
10k views

What are developers expected to do during testing in the latter half of each Sprint?

When you are using the Scrum framework, a Sprint cycle involves development and QA. At the end of the Sprint the tasks worked upon and tested are showcased and released. Typically, for a team of 3 to ...

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