“More meetings, Please,” Said No Scrum Team - Ever!

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“More meetings, Please,” Said No Scrum Team - Ever!

“More meetings, Please,”
Said No Scrum team - Ever!

Scrum Team often complains about unproductive planning sessions. They even ask if can they cancel them. Everyone wants fewer meetings, right? That’s why my answer and recommendation to have teams add a refinement session to their scrum cadence may come as a shock. However, refinement sessions are not just another meeting, they are a game-changer when it comes to sprint planning.
Planning without refinement is futile!
Scrum team - Business comic

I don’t blame you for not wanting to put one more zoom meeting on your calendar when you’re trying to get your work done. However, do you want to attend another planning meeting using the input on the left or on the right?

Scrum team - Backlog refinement

When a scrum team tells me that their planning meetings are painful (long, unfocused, no decisions are made, plans are quickly overturned right after the meeting), it’s a 99.9998% chance that they are trying to plan using raw ideas and information. Planning in the IT Engineering world needs to be based on some level of refinement. I’m not talking about the old waterfall way of refinement, which was 5-inch binders full of business requirements and a separate binder just as thick for the technical requirements. A backlog refinement meeting and story refinement every sprint has replaced the obsolete terminology formerly known as “grooming.”

Check out our slide deck, Planning without Refinement is Futile, below that has more information and insight on how introducing refinement meetings with clear agendas and outcomes can be the planning makeover your scrum teams need. Your level of frustration, redundancy, or angst about planning will be forever changed. Also, look for an added tip on how teams that are feeling meeting burnout were able to add two new meetings but counterbalanced it by setting some rules so that their non-meeting time is more productive. Scrum teams who have implemented the refinement as ceremonies now see meetings as a part of their work and not a distraction.

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