First question first: are we doing good?
The teams are doing fine and have found their ways.
Even better, we had the chance to recount our whole journey at Agile en Seine. If you take a look at the video, at the slides or at my article about it, you’ll see that we are now very happy with how we work and with what we deliver.
Feedback from France Télévisions’s Player team: “From Agile practices to Agile mindset”
This was the session we hold during Agile en Seine 2017!
About the practices we introduced one year ago…
Completely split teams
Yes, the teams are still fully independent in their members, backlogs, meetings. Some smaller teams share the same Product Owner, but that’s all.
We previously recommended or even enforced that team members have to switch teams on a regular basis. Then we stopped switching team members, unless when specific members wanted to switch for a good reason. This has not happened a lot and basically since then the teams just stayed together and kept bonding.
Finally, the team structure itself has changed over time. We happened to have some really small teams (2 developers) which made sense given that we were expected to fulfill several missions at the same time. Indeed, as I liked to say during Agile en Seine:
Our experience taught us that if it is not possible to have only one mission for the team, then it may make sense to split the team so that each (smaller) team only have one mission.
Even if you end up with really small teams — the focus will be a greater enabler.
However, later on the project, the missions changed. One of the initial missions was fulfilled (or, we could say, sufficiently fulfilled for now) while another mission was still going strong if not stronger. So the two teams merged and shared the same mission and focus. This was also the moment when Kanban was introduced for the first time — more on this later.
No Scrum Master
Another element worth noting, at some point the Scrum Master — myself — left the teams.
When I joined the team — there was only one team at the time — I was fully engaged in the Scrum Master role.
Later on, the team got bigger and even became several teams. They hired a second Product Owner, yet I was still the only Scrum Master aboard.
In all logic, I couldn’t do the Scrum Master duties anymore, at least not as fully as before. Without even knowing it, I became an Agile Coach for all these teams instead of a Scrum Master: still there and ready to help, but not part of the teams anymore.