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Effective Team Chartering - Scrum Gathering Orlando March 2010

How to kick start Scrum team formation by helping teams to create powerful charters. Presented at the March 2010 Scrum Gathering in Orlando by Jens Korte (Syndato GmbH) and Simon Roberts (ScrumCenter GmbH), http://scrumcenter.com

Simon Roberts

on 27 November 2010

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Transcript of Effective Team Chartering - Scrum Gathering Orlando March 2010

Effective Team Chartering
What is a
Team Charter?

Project Charter
Team Charter

Show me how a project starts and I'll tell you how it ends!
Comes from
Too Detailed
Integrate organizational
Multiple Teams?
Planning &
Daily Scrum
Sprint planning meeting
Sprint review
Requirements workshop
Estimation meeting
Technology &
Engineering Rules
Team Norms &
Communication Rules
acceptance criteria defined
Is a
Team Charter Important for Self Organization
Not Enough
Dictated by
Sprint review: Wednesday 2:00 pm
Daily Scrum: 9:30 am, conf. room 2
Retrospective: Wednesday 4:00 pm
Sprint planning: Thursday 10:00 am
Penalty for being late:
3 times in a sprint: bring a homemade
cake to retrospective.
User Stories in Story Points
Tasks in 1/4 days
Tasks not larger than 2 days
New Code:
Write JUnit before code
Write code until test succeeds
Refactor code
Write test to reproduce bug
Fix the code
Refactor code
Bug detected:
Acceptance Tests in Selenium
and FitNesse
Respectful conversation
Active listening
Expecations of PO:
regular presence at Daily Scrum
chance for interaction with team directly after
timely feedback
timely response to questions
In classical project management often a project charter or project definition is used to define the project goal, the scope and the definition of success. Normally it is predefined from upper management.
The team writes, takes responsibility for and owns their charter. ScrumMaster and Product Owner give input.

For a particular organization, there might be mandatory entries such as:
Governance compliance requirements
CMMI requirements
A group of people or animals linked in a common purpose.
One precondition for self organization is a clearly defined system boundary. A Team Charter helps to define these boundaries.

The system is not just the team - the (generative) rules also define the system.

By spending time helping the team to define its own rules (which are added to those that we import as part of Scrum), we can make the system boundary clear.
35. There shall be one measure of wine throughout our whole realm, and one measure of ale and one measure of corn--namely, the London quart;--and onewidth of dyed and russet and hauberk cloths--namely, two ells below the selvage. And with weights, moreover, it shall be as with measures.
Magna Carta 1215
13. The city of London shall enjoy all its ancient liberties and free customs, both by land and by water. We also will and grant that all other cities, boroughs, towns, and ports shall enjoy all their liberties and free customs.
Magna Carta 1215
23. Neither a town nor a man shall be forced to make bridges over the rivers, with the exception of those who, from of old and of right ought to do it.
Magna Carta 1215
Creating a Team Charter
"Self-organization is the tendency of an open system to generate new structures and patterns based on its own internal dynamics. Organization design is not imposed from above or outside; it emerges from the interactions of the agents in the system."
Facilitating Organization Change: Lessons from Complexity Science (Edwin E. Olson and Glenda H. Eoyang)
Three factors influence the patterns that emerge:

The container sets the bounds for the self-organizing system. It defines the "self" that organizes.
Significant differences determine the primary patterns that emerge (power, level of expertise, gender, ...).
Transforming exchanges form the connections between system agents.
"Just as a person needs time and space to incubate thoughts before a new Idea can emerge, a system needs a bounded space for the emergence of new patterns."
By helping a team to create a charter we can clearly define the container inside which self-organization can take place.
Unit tested
Documented (JavaDoc)
Checked in
During each sprint:
Requirements workshop
Estimation meeting
Time for research
Acceptance criteria fulfilled (automated test)
User documentation updated
Integrated (automated acceptance test runs in Hudson)
Accepted by PO
All story tests OK
Installation scripts updated
Deployed in system integration environment
Release note updated
Regression test OK
Performance test OK
Planning Poker
The journey is as important as the destination!
Facilitated Brainstorming
Team decides
Communication rules
Team norms
Engineering rules
Planning & estimation
Definition of done
Dedicated workshop before first sprint
Dot voting
In Scrum this is typically covered by the product vision.
Team doesn't internalize the charter because they don't own it.
Self-organization damaged potentially
At a recent coaching engagement we saw this in action. The development manager distributed a detailed description of done to all team members (2 Scrum teams). During the team-chartering exercise, we facilitated the teams in building their definition of done. They agreed on and tookover all of the points raised by the development manager. At the end of the first sprint, it was clear that the teams had not really been following the definition of done. This was a major topic discussed in the retrospective.
"... organizing a self-organizing system is not only an oxymoron, it will very likely throw a spanner in the works."
Harrison Owen
Wave Rider: Leadership for High Performance in a Self-Organizing World
“Simple, clear purpose and principles give rise to complex, intelligent behavior. Complex rules and regulations give rise to simple, stupid behavior.”
Dee Hock, founder of VISA
"company culture - not rulez"
"Lean DoD"
team members during coaching
Uncovers unclear expectations and ambiguous goals
Common understanding of work
Functional communication inside and outside the team
Helps team forming
Defines a container, so that self-organization can emerge
Harrison Owen,
Wave Rider: Leadership for High Performance in a Self-Organizing World
Edwin E. Olson and Glenda H. Eoyang,
Facilitating Organization Change: Lessons from Complexity Science
A modern English translation of the Magna Carta of 1215:
Simon Roberts
Jens Korte
An agreement between the PO and team about what ready means and how to get to ready before each sprint - perhaps institutionalized by a requirements workshop and estimation meeting during each sprint as part of the up to 10% of the sprint capacity that Scrum allows for product backlog grooming. Post-estimation meeting research is also important - the team needs to have time between prioritised backlog being published and sprint planning to increase their understanding of the backlog items that will be candidates for the next sprint.
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