The Scrum of Scrums is an agile management technique that involves a meeting where representatives from each team meet to discuss the progress of their work and look for ways to collaborate. It scales a group of 12 people. The meeting should be attended by representatives from each team – typically the scrum master and product owner – as well as other key stakeholders, such as the CTO or director of engineering.
The Scrum of Scrums meeting is a forum where teams can discuss their work, identify potential areas of overlap and collaboration, and report on their progress. The goal is to help ensure that all teams are working effectively together towards the common goal.
This type of meeting is typically held once a week and should last no more than an hour. It can be helpful to have an agenda for the meeting, which might include:
- Reviewing progress on shared goals and objectives
- Discussing any issues or roadblocks that teams are encountering
- Identifying areas of potential collaboration
- Planning and scheduling upcoming work
It is an important tool for ensuring effective communication and collaboration between teams. By meeting regularly, team members can identify potential areas of overlap and work together to overcome any obstacles.
Tips for Running an Impactful Scrum of Scrums
Clear the Purpose of the Meeting
The Scrum of Scrums is a meeting, not a place for ongoing discussions. The goal should be to identify and address issues as they arise.
Ideally, the team will have set up clear expectations at the beginning of each sprint that helps everyone stay focused on moving forward toward the objectives outlined in their individual backlog items. That means avoiding the temptation to turn the meeting into a status update – especially if you have an overly ambitious agenda!
Keep It Short, But Regular
Schedule the meeting right before your daily scrum so that team members can address issues as they arise. That will help ensure everyone stays focused on their current sprint instead of past ones or future ones.
Make It Visual, But Don’t Over-Complicate It
Post a board with columns for each team and sticky notes for the backlog items that are being worked on by those teams. That way, everyone can see what other teams are working on at a glance – no need to go into detail about individual tasks! Plus, the board will help ensure that teams stay on topic.
Designate the Right Ambassador for the Meeting
The scrum master is the best person to represent the team in the meeting, as they are responsible for facilitating communication between teams. However, if there is someone else on the team who has a better understanding of the work that’s being done, make sure they attend as well.
Understand That It Is Not a Meeting
The Scrum of Scrums is not meant to replace your daily meeting. If members are having problems with their sprint, it’s best to address them during the morning standup. That said, there may be times when team representatives need more time than 15 minutes for a discussion – that’s where this meeting comes in!