Friday, May 16, 2014

"It's not too far, it just seems like it is." (Yogi Berra)

I wanted to talk quickly about 4 classic mistakes or issues.  We all must deal with these.
Before starting, I wanted to mention this famous and important quote: "In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is." (Yogi Berra)  I forgot to mention this one in the last class, and it is pretty important.  To me, it means that although you may think you understood what I said in class, when you meet that same problem in reality, it will confuse you.  Only later will you understand what I really meant (or maybe, what Jeff Sutherland really meant, about Scrum).  So, be patient with yourself, and do not be surprised when reality confuses you.  But still act.  Better to act and learn than to think too much. (But the advice is not: 'don't think at all'.)
1. "It's not too far, it just seems like it is." (Yes, Yogi Berra said this one too.)  To me, this means that when we start Scrum, it may feel impossible.  Some things may feel like we will never get the people or the firm or the situation to do them.  Or that we ourselves will never learn how to do them.  But, often you soon find that what seemed impossible can happen rather quickly.   Once you get a little practice and a little help.  More automated testing comes to mind at this moment.
2. "I have it all figured out."  Of course, we all fall victim to this one. No one has it all figured out.  So, specifically, some people leave the 2 day CSM class thinking they have it all figured out. This also is a delusion.  The glass is not empty (or, the work is not impossible), but neither is the glass full (ie, it will not be easy).
3. "I don't need any help." Well, that you will only really learn by doing is quite true.  But you will learn more and faster if you get a coach or other help from outside.  This is true if you wish to be a professional in any good sport (and Scrum is a sport that we want to play professionally and we want to win).  No, I am not saying that you only have to get help from me.  There are many to get help from.  But to get better, you will need some help.  And help from outside your company.  (I will not explain that now.)
4. When you get to the top of the mountain, you will then see a bigger mountain. -- This means that once you start to master the basics, you will start to see that the basics were actually far more complex than I told you.  And you will see also there, both in the basics and in the more advanced moves, there is far more to learn.  This is true, of course, with any good sport.  But, it does not help for me to talk much about that next mountain.  Wax on, wax off.  Focus on what you need to learn today.  Leave until tomorrow the troubles of tomorrow.  Focus on today and get it done, and learn.  If I had made it too complex (and maybe I did), you would have slowed yourself down by thinking too much and trying to be too perfect to soon.  KISS.  Keep is stupid simple.
There are several reasons I have put these 4 together, or all of these things together.  In part, because of a recent in-house course with a client.  But that experience alone does not explain all the comments ( is not all about you).
I hope these comments are useful to anyone who may read them.

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