Articles | December 15, 2022

5 Scrum values

Agile project management in software development has become extremely popular in recent years. Scrum framework emphasizes an incremental approach based on constant feedback and collaboratio. In the article, we will focus on the Five Scrum Values. What are they? Why are they so important?

Scrum Values

An Agile way of working

Surely everyone involved in an IT project has come across the following statement at some point:

“We are uncovering better ways of developing software by doing it and helping others do it”.

With the introduction of the “Agile Manifesto for Software Development”, where this quotation comes from, new methods have begun to conquer the IT world. According to the annual survey “The State of Agile”, Scrum is the most frequently chosen framework for Agile software development. That’s why we’re going to focus on it in the article explaining the 5 Scrum values that guide Scrum Teams in their day-to-day work.

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Scrum Values and Principles

The Scrum Guide was introduced in the 90s as a better means of cooperation and solving tough problems. It puts emphasis on both cooperation and completing tasks – which is reflected in the slogan that you can see on the official Scrum.org website: “A better way to work together and get work done”.

In the Scrum Guide you will find information on:  

Empirical Scrum pillars 

  • Transparency, 
  • Inspection, 
  • Adaptation.

Definition of a Scrum Team 

  • Developers, 
  • Product Owner,
  • Scrum Master.

Scrum events 

  • Daily Scrum, 
  • Sprint Review, 
  • Sprint Retrospective. 

Artifacts

  • Product Goal, 
  • Sprint Goal, 
  • Definition of Done.

The role of a Scrum Master is to ensure that Scrum principles and values are known and respected by every team member. You will find out all about them in the article: Scrum vs Kanban in Software Development.

Agile Principles vs Scrum Principles

As mentioned above, the principles of the Scrum Framework are laid out in the Scrum Guide. The general principles of Agile, which is a broader concept, are described in turn in the Manifesto for Agile Software Development.

These include:

  • early deployment and continuous development of the software for customer satisfaction (running software is the key indicator of progress)
  • openness to changing business requirements
  • frequent delivery of software in short cycles
  • close collaboration between the business and the development team (the Manifesto emphasizes the importance of face-to-face communication)
  • the importance of trust in the project team and providing its members with the necessary support
  • simplicity, self-organization, striving to increase efficiency, and searching for a way to deliver excellence

Five Scrum Values

Now that we know the wider context, let’s look at the values described in the Scrum Guide. We will also find out which specific situations they are important in for the day-to-day work of Scrum teams.

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  1. Courage 

Some people are afraid to admit that they need support from other Scrum team members. Such fears can hinder the work of the entire team working together to reach the goals of the Scrum Team. For example, it may turn out that a developer engaged in a Scrum Project starts to work on tough problems and encounters difficulties due to a lack of technical knowledge. He might start to think: “Where do I obtain the know-how?”, “Should I work overtime to get it sorted?”. In Scrum, having the courage to ask for help and get things done is vital. It is just one of the many situations in which courage is essential in Scrum. Courage also makes it easier to express one’s opinion (e.g. during Daily Scrum meetings) and make decisions despite the possibility of failure. Read more about courage in scrum.

  1. Openness 

Openness is part and parcel of teamwork. Teams that are open to change try new solutions, come up with new ideas and sometimes change their way of thinking. It is always worth asking whether other members of the team have different ideas when it comes to accomplishing troublesome tasks. In Scrum, you must be aware of teams’ strengths and weaknesses and not hide the truth from the other people involved in the project (either themselves or stakeholders). It is also the Scrum Master’s role to promote openness within the team and encourage team members to try new things and communicate openly. Read more about openness in scrum.

  1. Commitment

Once a team member has asked for help and the team has reacted with openness, everybody needs to commit to solving the issue. Every Scrum team member does their best to remove the obstacle. Through commitment, we not only work together on one task but also get closer to a common goal. Read more about commitment in scrum.

  1. Respect 

In the Scrum Team, communication plays a key role. For this reason, respect is fundamental. In day-to-day cooperation, a variety of situations may arise and Scrum Team members must bear in mind that we all have different points of view and ideas. In Agile methodology, constructive feedback and mutual respect are necessary to build trust. A Scrum Master helps team members to respect each other’s ideas and ensure everyone has their say. Read more about respect in scrum.

  1. Focus 

Focus is essential to solving problems and prioritizing tasks. The entire Scrum team focuses on resolving the problem in an agile way. It is always worth thinking about the easiest possible solution. To obtain optimal effects, we need synergy, focus, and to take the ideas of others into consideration. The combination of the above always brings the best results. Read more about focus in scrum.

Scrum Values – summary

Scrum Team members work together to ensure the Product Increment. By prioritizing tasks listed in the Backlog, step by step they get closer to success – achieving the common goal.  

The Scrum team must know and respect the Scrum principles included in the Scrum Guide. Sets of Scrum values come in handy in everyday work. The team members need to be open, show commitment to learning new things, and adapt quickly to changes. They should show courage and respect each other. Only then is the successful implementation of Scrum framework possible. It is the Scrum Master’s role to foster a culture in which the team can fully understand the concept of Scrum and thereby reach their full potential. Each value is discussed in a separate article – we hope that they will help you to understand the importance of Scrum Values in one’s daily work.

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