Blowhard Watch: Most outrageous Scrum Claim yet from Scrum CoInventor

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People familiar with Scrum, XP, and Agile know that proponents of these methodologies often make baseless and ludicrous claims while they shamelessly hype their products.

But even by these low standards, Jeff Sutherland goes over the top with his recent blog posting, “A Good ScrumMaster is Hard to Find”.

In this article, he is hyping two things:

1) Scrum in general

and 2) A “buddy” of his he is trying to find a job for.

The fact that he uses the #1 paragraph first to blindside his audience into not realizing it’s a sales pitch for #2 is egregious enough.

But how he does #1 is patently ridiculous. He states:

“Really good ScrumMasters are hard to find because they get promoted to VP of Engineering or head of a business unit or run off and start their own company. Why? The math is simple. As soon as someone demonstrates s/he gets twice the results of anyone else in the company, management starts the promotion process. Because they are experts in leading cross functional teams, they can take on anything in the company.” — Jeff Sutherland

Whoa!

Let’s look at the first sentence and replace ScrumMasters with $X:

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Posted in .NET, Agile, Business, Entrepreneurship, Management, Managers, Scrum, Software, Software Development, Startup, Startups, Thoughts about Agile/XP/SCRUM/Patterns, Venture Capital, XP | 13 Comments

Is Your Startup Boss Optimistic and Demanding or Just Crazy and Selfish?

Now that the Web 2.x rush is upon us, and there are more and more startups being formed with with “professional” money or simply out of a garage.

Whether it’s garage based or VC based, the situation is often the same:

Long hours, lots of promises, a demanding and infallibile boss and Kool-Aid by the barrel.

I know a little about startups; I’ve been the CEO of a startup, I’ve gone the investment route, and I’ve worked for a number of startups as a Consultant.

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Posted in Business, C#, Consultant, Contractors, Entrepreneurship, Jobs, Recruiter, Recruiters, Software Development, Startup, Startups, Venture Capital | 1 Comment

Did you know the typical Recruiter Margin is 40%? No? Read on….

Most businesses and contractors that make use of Recruiting agencies have no idea how much money is lining the pockets of the Agencies.

“The most they’ll pay is $60/hr, Sugar”

Why not? Because the Agencies keep it a secret; why do they keep it a secret? Because if they didn’t keep it a secret, no one would make use of their “Services”.

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Posted in .NET, Business, C#, Consultant, Contractors, Entrepreneurship, Java, Jobs, Recruiter, Recruiters, Ruby, Smalltalk, Software, Software Development, Startup, Startups, Venture Capital | 10 Comments

Embracing Failure: Agile and Fear Driven Process

 

XP Implies that failure is inevitable, and we should be expected  to (refactor rewrite  mercilessly); however they try to minimize the impact of the failure, by only failing one day at a time.

However, since their next attempt does not use any more analyses than the previous (failed) attempt, they will continue to fail every day in a row (fail early, fail often), as can be seen here in this example of an XP Luminary trying (unsuccessfully over 5 attempts) to solve a sudoku puzzle. 

Using a non XP process another author was able to solve the problem easily.

XP Claims that they “Embrace Change” and other processes have a “Fear of Change”.

It is the opinion of this author that XP experiences a “Fear of Notation (Documentation)”, “Fear of Process“, a “Fear of Excellent Programmers“, a “Fear of Design/Architecture“, and a “Fear of Large Teams“. If you then view XP as driven by the “Five Fears”,  then all of their other tenets and practices (no or minimal documentation, small teams, pair programming) become obvious as they drive out (and in fact excommunicate) the feared practices entirely in the XP dogma

Like George H.W. Bush and his famous statement about Broccoli:

I do not like broccoli. And I haven’t liked it since I was a little kid and my mother made me eat it. And I’m President of the United States and I’m not going to eat any more broccoli.

How is that different from:

I do not like Documentation. And I haven’t liked it since I was a little kid and my teacher made me write it. And I’m Scrum Lord of a .Com and I’m not going to write any more Documentation.

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Posted in .NET, Agile, Business, C#, Consultant, Contractors, Entrepreneurship, Java, Jobs, Ruby, Scrum, Smalltalk, Software, Software Development, Startup, Startups, Thoughts about Agile/XP/SCRUM/Patterns, Venture Capital, XP | 13 Comments

Does XP/Scrum Violate the “Agile Manifesto”?

In this article we will examine whether XP/Scrum is consistent with the Agile Manfiesto and also look at whether Agile processes depersonalize and disempower the individual, making them mere tools of the collective State.

The first stanza of  the second chapter of the “Agile Manifesto” (Ch.2 V.1) states that they value:

“Individuals and interactions over processes and tools”

But is that really true?

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Posted in .NET, Agile, Business, C#, Consultant, Contractors, Entrepreneurship, Java, Jobs, Recruiters, Ruby, Scrum, Smalltalk, Software, Software Development, Startup, Startups, Thoughts about Agile/XP/SCRUM/Patterns, Venture Capital, XP | 12 Comments

It’s not velocity that matters, it’s how long it takes to get from point A to point B

Agilistas talk about “velocity” as if that is the metric that matters.

It isn’t. What matters is how long it takes to create a reliable software product — how long it takes to get from Point A to Point B.

“Agile Vehicle Turns on a Dime,
Gets Nowhere Fast”

If the teams so-called “velocity” is high, but they are doing donuts in the parking lot and changing direction daily, constantly throwing out and rewriting code because they did the simplest thing possible, thinking only for today and not for tomorrow, they will and do take longer than a team that adopts a think first, code second approach.

Understanding the problem leads to a better overall solution — even if it takes time to understand the problem.

Consider flying from LA to Tokyo.  Pretty much, Tokyo is directly west of Los Angeles. So, the so called “Agile” team would “do the simplest thing” which is, to fly directly west.

A more thoughtful team would realize that it takes more time and fuel to fly directly west than it does to fly a so called “Great Circle Route”.

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Posted in Agile, C#, Java, Ruby, Scrum, Smalltalk, Software, Software Development, Thoughts about Agile/XP/SCRUM/Patterns, XP | 3 Comments

Scrum Master Jar Jar

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Scrum replaces the Pointy Haired Boss with Scrum Master Jar Jar

Despite all the mystique, the “Scrum” meeting itself is nothing more than a Stand Up Weekly Staff Meeting. Except Daily.

And you thought being a Stormtrooper was hard. Let’s tune in now as the Scrum Master Jar Jar asks the 3 questions.

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Posted in Agile, C#, Funny, Humor, Humour, Java, Ruby, Scrum, Smalltalk, Software, Software Development, Star Wars, Thoughts about Agile/XP/SCRUM/Patterns, XP | 34 Comments