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Tame the beast called "Product Backlog" with "Backlog Grooming"

I am Deepti and I consult organisations on how they can achieve Agility at various levels (Team, Department and Org). The framework that is most preferred to start the journey is SCRUM.

Teams start with a lot of excitement. What they don't understand is that despite all the training and good intentions in their journey to achieve agility via Scrum, they often will fail to deliver. One major issue is conflict around the product backlog. They don't understand how to create a Product Backlog that allows them to deliver successfully "Done" Stories. And this results in a blame game between Product Owner(s) and the Development Team. Team feels that the Product Owner has not given them consumable stories, and the Product Owner feels that the team did not ask the right questions, and tried to take away 'ready' stories in Sprint Planning meeting. The beast keeps sitting there, enjoying evil victory. In the end blame goes to Scrum and is not good.

So what's the solution? How to tame this beast called "The Backlog"?

Simple - groom it well before the planning meeting, so that when you enter the planning meeting, you have all the needed information, and when you exit the planning meeting you know your commitment. Peace!

Here is a most simple and quick video on Backlog Grooming. I cannot emphasize how important it is to get a clear concept on Backlog Grooming:


If you take a liking to the content, make sure to check out the Agile Corner where you can find and interactive contest open to all. Enjoy!

1 comment

Thanks for sharing the video. I do think though that backlog grooming works better when developers and team members attend, since this helps them understand the scope and to ask questions to make sure we're all on the same page.


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