Have you ever attended a Daily Scrum and thought to yourself “Why do we need to have a status meeting every single day?” or “I don’t really see why we need this meeting”?
Assuming you have been practicing Scrum for a while, you have probably attended your share of unproductive Daily Scrum/Stand-up meetings. According to the Scrum Guide, the Daily Scrum is a required collaboration event for your team to adjust your plan. I have a feeling that this may not have been your experience.
As a seasoned Scrum practitioner, I have encountered many teams that feel that they no longer need a Daily Scrum. There are a few reasons that this opinion may have formed without your knowledge; take a look to see that you should watch out for. This should help you be more prepared to coach the team and help them grow.
Reason #1 – The team is high-performing
If a Scrum team has been together for several months, or even years, they may be tempted to do away with the Daily Scrum. One argument you may hear is “we already talk all day long, so we don’t need this meeting”.
Reason #2 – The team is collocated and highly collaborative
If a team sits right next to each other and collaborate very effectively, the team members likely talk to on another frequently. In this case, the Daily Scrum may be perceived as an administrative event that adds little value.
Reason #3 – The team is highly effective at swarming
If a team consistently swarms on backlog items, meaning that they work together on User Stories and/or practice Pair Programming, the Daily Scrum may be seen as unnecessary by the team.
If you feel that your team has reached any of these states, you may be tempted to cancel the Daily Scrums for good. Unless your team has worked together successfully for several years, it is not advisable to cancel the Daily Scrum. This event is designed to help the team collaborate, so take advantage of this structure to help your team get into a consistent rhythm. In most cases, the temptation to do away with the Daily Scrum stems from poor execution which can be addressed through coaching and training. You may consider additional training for your team (NOT just the Scrum Master!) to help them get the most out of this important event and use it as a daily planning activity.
See links below for additional resources related to Scrum Master training.