Following the famous mantra of “you can’t manage what you can’t measure”, Scrum teams have often a set of metrics to monitor their activity. Velocity, the amount of work performed by a team during a single sprint, might be one of the most famous Agile metric. Doc Norton has written an interesting book about the negative sides of velocity and what might be a good metric for an Agile team.
Books on Scrum and Agile Project Management
Gojko Adzic is known in the Agile software development world for his work on requirements presented in his book “Specification by Example – How successful teams deliver the right software”. In this small and easy to read book, he focuses on a single tool that could be very useful for Scrum teams: impact mapping.
Continuous Digital is the companion book of the Project Myopia book also written by Allan Kelly. Both books are related to its viewpoint that software development activity needs a better framework that the project approach to be successful. If Project Myopia is the book describing the concepts behind his proposal, Continuous Digital provides the “how to”.
Fifty Quick Ideas to Improve your User Stories is another book from Gojko Adzic, a consultant and author that already produced some very good books on Agile requirements like Impact Mapping and Specification by Example. It goal is to help people involved with Agile requirements to improve their discussion with the stakeholders and the planning activities associated with user stories. This is clearly not a book for beginners on how to write user stories.
One of the trends associated with the Agile approach is the shift from “building the software right” to “building the right software”. This translates in putting more emphasis on collaborative product definition activities and quicker feedback. The Minimum Viable Product (MVP) is an approach that tries to elicit quick customer feedback while providing him with a working product. In his book Lean Inception, Paulo Caroli proposes a workshop-based recipe to build the MVP canvas.
Projects have been the main working mode of software development activities since the beginning of computers. According to Allan Kelly, it is however not the best mode to develop software. He fosters the #noproject movement to fight project myopia that he defines as the “belief that the project model is the only way of managing business change and development.”
As Agile has become a mainstream approach in software development, there are many books and discussions about its concepts and how to implement them. The book “Environment for Agile Teams” by Andy Brandt provides a different, and very interesting, perspective as it discusses the practical details of the everyday life of a Scrum team.