Why is this Sprint Valuable?

If a member of your Scrum Team was asked, “Why is this Sprint valuable?”, would they know the answer?

If not, why not?

Why would it be important for the Developers in a Scrum Team to know whether a Sprint is valuable?

Let’s look for answers in the Scrum Guide, written by the co-founders of Scrum, Dr Jeff Sutherland and Ken Schwaber. The Scrum Guide contains the definition of the Scrum Framework and each element of it.

The Product Owner proposes how the product could increase its value and utility in the current Sprint. The whole Scrum Team then collaborates to define a Sprint Goal that communicates why the Sprint is valuable to stakeholders. The Sprint Goal must be finalized prior to the end of Sprint Planning

The Scrum Guide

From a Scrum perspective, the answer is clear. The Sprint Goal needs to communicate the value of the Sprint to stakeholders and ultimately, the Increment that will be delivered. 

The whole Scrum Team then collaborates to define a Sprint Goal that communicates why the Sprint is valuable to stakeholders.

The Scrum Guide

It's All About People

However, there is much more to this than simply serving the prerequisites of Scrum’s Sprint Goal.

In fact, this is not about Scrum at all, it is more about the people, the humans involved in collaborating to create the Increment (the outcome of the Sprint).

When team members truly understand WHY there is value in what they are delivering, WHO that value serves, and HOW it is realised, they tend to feel a greater sense of ownership of what they are working on, and are more likely to become highly motivated by this.

So, yes it is necessary for Scrum Team members to know why their Sprint is valuable, in order to create the Sprint Goal.

More important is that the Scrum Team embraces the value of the work they are doing and come togther with a common purpose, as one team and self-manage in order to deliver that value as a Done, usable Increment, by the end of the Sprint.

The Product Owner is Accountable

The Product Owner is accountable for ensuring that the Product Backlog is clearly understood, including why it is valuable. 

The Product Owner proposes how the product could increase its value and utility in the current Sprint.

The Scrum Guide

We shall look at why the Product Owner is accountable in other blogs.