I was talking with my sister last night. The usual stuff, “How’s the family, how’s work…”
As it turns out she is looking for a job. I asked why. She stated that her company (which develops COTS and then offers services to customize) was up against a wall. They had been promising a product (I think she said and had a deliverable due in December. She said that there was no chance of hitting that deadline.
We had a conversation similar to the following:
Me: (Knowing they adopted RUP about 1.5 years ago) That’s rough. Where are you in the process?
Her: Oh, I’m following my process!
Me: (thinking “My process? hmmm…”) No, what phase are you in?
Her: Phase? No, I use ClearCase when I need to and ClearQuest when I need to. I’ve got that down.
Me: (Starting to understand why the project is having issues) So, you’re not following an iterative process?
Her: Sure we are — we iterate all over the place. My team is in iteration 4, while the development team is on iteration 32. We tend to be behind ’cause they keep making changes and we need to catch up.
Me: Ok, so you are following an iterative process, but not necessarily RUP?
Her: No, its RUP, well lately everything has been agile?
Me: (wondering if my sister has suddenly developed blonde roots) Agile? Well, that is good. Then at least you’ll have something to deliver in December. It may not be everything, but there will be something.
Her: No, it’s a mess. All we do is go to meetings every morning.
Me: Oh, scrum meetings? good for you! What do you think of Scrum?
Her: It stinks!
Me: Ummm, ok? But you have a daily scrum in the morning for 15 minutes – what did you do, what are you going to do,etc…
Her: Yep, that’s the one.
Me: Great! So the team got together and decided what parts of the project can be delivered for this sprint, you’ve got 2 sprints by the end of December, sounds promising!
Her: Sprint? The whole team never gets together to decide anything. My team just meets in the morning.
Me: Oh, so this is a big project? You meet with your team and your scrum master then meets to have a scrum of scrums with the other leads.
Her: Its about 80 people. I don’t think my boss has ever met with the other team leads – well, since maybe July. He’s got a list of stuff to do and he tells us when to do it. When things don’t work with what the other teams develop we have to go back and fix it.
Me: Alrightly then, let me know if you need help with your resume….