Daily Scrum is not a stand-up nor a status update meeting

In most of the organizations that are adopting agile, Scrum is the framework of choice. There are multiple reasons for it, it is easy to understand, not very prescriptive, supports agile in small pockets which can be easily scaled as needed.

However, as it is easy to understand; people learning Scrum really do not put a lot of effort in understanding the core rules, principles or values of Scrum. They often fall prey to the misconception that doing the Scrum events, having the roles and artifacts in place is going to make them agile. And since, we tend not to really understand the underlying principles of Scrum, we start to believe in lot of fallacies that tend to cloud the realities of Scrum.

One simple event which is highly misunderstood right from its name is Daily Scrum. Lot of practitioners call Daily Scrum as Daily Stand-up. However as per the Scrum guide there is no event called as Daily Stand-up. It is because of the practice of “standing up” while having Daily Scrum, the event is called Daily Stand-up. There is no prescription from Scrum Guide as to whether it should be done sitting or standing. You may do it while doing a plank as well (if that’s what your team needs to keep it within a timebox).

Another misconception about Daily Scrum is, it is a status reporting meeting. It is NOT. Daily Scrum is not a status update meeting. The sole purpose of Daily Scrum is for the Development Team to inspect its progress towards the Sprint Goal and adapt its sprint backlog so that any divergence can be detected and mitigated. However, because people do not understand the purpose of the event but start following a practice they fall prey to this misconception. People also tend to believe that there is only one way to do Daily Scrum and that is to answer, following three questions:

  1. What did I do yesterday that helped the Development team meet the sprint goal?
  2. What will I do today that would help the development team meet the sprint goal?
  3. Do I see any impediment that prevents me or the development team from meeting the sprint goal?

However, this again is not true. This is just one recommended way of doing Daily Scrum for the teams that starting – up with Scrum. Teams may choose any way of doing a Daily Scrum as long as their focus is on the progress towards the Sprint Goal.

Daily Scrum

Daily Scrum is a 15 minute time boxed event meant for the Development Team. During Daily Scrum the Development Team plans its works for the next 24 hours. The Daily Scrum happens at the same place, same time everyday to reduce the complexity.

The purpose of Daily Scrum is to inspect the development team’s progress towards the Sprint Goal and to adapt its Sprint Backlog in the event of any divergence is found from the Sprint Goal.

The Daily Scrum eliminates the need of any other meetings, improves the communication on the team and identify and remove any impediments that hamper the Development Team’s progress towards Sprint Goal.