Why do you hate Scrum

How do I deal with a counterproductive Scrum team?

Ok, so let's start roughly - a big part of the problem is yours - you hear, but you don't listen. Your team will tell you clearly what the problems are. You need to address them instead of blaming your team.


For them, planning is just a waste of time as we are just moving the overflow to the new sprint and not completing the work anyway. So why bother?

Exactly. If you consistently don't allocate the right time to tasks and they are consistently underestimated, it has very negative effects:

  • Developers feel under constant pressure.
  • "I can't do anything in time".
  • Since the process is not working, they rightly see it as a waste of time.

solution: Correct your estimates with the combination of:

  • Story points (as a combination of time and risk).
  • Do not allow tasks in a sprint that are> 55 VP
  • Comparative Estimates
  • Evidence Based Scheduling

As a basis for this, it is important to keep track of the time that indeed needed to complete previous assignments. This includes testing, writing documentation, writing tests, end-user training, integration efforts, and deployment. etc.

Once you have a total time for a specific task, you can base the expected time on those previous tasks.

Ask each member if the task assigned to them feels more complicated or easier than selecting previous tasks, and adjust the number of assigned tasks based on that.

If you haven't used SP before) my advice is to start with 1 hour of really honest work = 5SP as a guideline. Remember that you get in the usual development environment maybe 6 of them per day, i.e. 30 SP / day Max. Never allow an assignment that takes more than 2 days to get to the board. In my experience, ideally, you should have 2 tasks per day.

If you don't plan correctly, the rest of the Scrum activities will look like a waste of time (including planning).


During the retrospective, I can only sense that they want to say "Stop Doing Scrum". One person does it, but the other is silent and I have to deal with it every time.

Reminds me of and two of the past jobs. If you don't remove obstacles, it is rightly a waste of time.

Listen again to what people actually say. If the complaints raised during the retrospective are not addressed, why at all?

In order to:

  • Consider Six Thinking Hats Techniques to Improve Communication.
  • Reduce the time required for the retrospective to a maximum of 30 minutes.
  • Make sure that complaints raised during the retrospective are dealt with before the next.

Daily SCRUMs

Daily Scrum is just a waste of time for them again because none of them bother to talk and plan the day. They just say, "I was working on Task X yesterday and I will be working on it again today." And most of the time they just joke around until I get strict.

Sounds like you have two problems here: SCRUM meetings are too long, and your planning and task creation sucks.

Both can sound like a scrum meeting is a waste of time.

For the SCRUM length:

  • Try for a maximum of 15 minutes.
  • Try all of them standing up.
  • Fixed formula:
    • What you had done yesterday?.
    • What are you planning today?
    • What your team members (not you!) Should know about the task, how it affects them.
  • Don't worry about obstacles if you don't want to address them.

This is second evidence that your planning is affecting your situation. If you don't have anything specific to report, it means that the task is usually too big and all you could say was: I worked on it.

  • Divide tasks into bullet points.
  • Make sure the tasks are small enough to take less than a day. Ideally, the IMO task should last ~ 3 hours and be around 13 SP, so you can do 2 per day in most conditions.

Dealing with the team

Today the person who is always against me told me to stop saying, "You said that's what you committed to this sprint" because in his words he said, "We never do a sprint. We we only move into tasks and take on new ones. " next sprint to fill a quota. We actually do KanBan. So stop saying that. "

He's right. You are wrong. They do bastardized SCRUM and / or variation of Kanban. Not their fault at all.

I understand why he says that, but he doesn't seem to realize it is because he and everyone else on the team doesn't care.

I don't think you understand at all. They may care less than they used to, but being accused not only does not improve anything, but it may also make the situation worse. If it were the low point, they might actually start digging.

You just work instead of dealing with obstacles.

And here I thought doing work is what their work is about. I wonder who should be handling obstacles ... oh right. A scrum master. It is your Job. They tell you what's going on. They fix it. Not the other way around.

This is probably why you have so many problems in retrospect.

How can I let them see that joking around and circling during these meetings is costing the company a lot of money?

Stop the useless meetings and they joke about the water cooler instead. See also the section on punches that improve morale. If you use humor as a defense mechanism, you've got some serious problems sir!

Make a joke - like working with your team, not against it. (Who cares about the company's money? Are you a shareholder now?)

In summary

Your poor planning results in other parts of SCRUM failing and everyone who attends it is unhappy. They see that nothing changes, nothing is addressed and their complaints are not heard.

Improve your planning and improve the flow and morale.

When you remove your barriers, your team will move forward faster. Ask them what you You should do to help them.

Most importantly: Listen to your people. They already told you (and me) what the problem is.

Good luck!