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Stand-Up Meeting

Also: Daily Scrum, Scrum

A short, daily all-hands meeting in which members of an Agile team address three key questions:
What did you get done since the last stand-up?

What will you do before the next stand-up?

What impediments stand in your way?

The meeting is held at the same time and in the same place every day, with team members standing in a small circle. The point of standing up is to discourage the kinds of tangents and discursions that make for meeting hell, and the meeting is usually time boxed to no more than 15 minutes. The stand-up focuses on peer-to peer coordination through information exchange, and the meeting serves to raise the visibility of each person’s work and to ensure work integration. Only members of the development team participate, as many people as can comfortably stand in a small circle.


The concept of the Daily Stand Up meeting originated with Extreme Programming. It was adapted to Scrum, where it is known as the Daily Scrum or Scrum.

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See User Story.

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Story Splitting

The process of breaking user stories down into (a) smaller, more easily implemented user stories or (b) tasks. Likewise, epics may be decomposed into user stories, and tasks may be decomposed into more fine-grained tasks.

Story splitting is usually performed during backlog refinement and sprint planning. It is an important precursor to story sizing (estimation). Story splitting may also occur throughout the development process.

In the typical product backlog, user stories grow more fine grained as they near implementation and are larger and less detailed the further down the queue they reside.

Further Learning

Quick Reference Guide for Splitting User Stories – Agile Learning Labs – blog post, PDF
SPIDR: An Alternative Method for Splitting User Stories – Ascendle – blog post
How To Split A User Story? – Vibhor Chandel – Video (19 minutes)
Five Story-Splitting Mistakes and How to Stop Making Them – Mountain Goat Software – blog post

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According to Wikipedia:

A system is a group of interacting or interrelated elements that act according to a set of rules to form a unified whole. A system, surrounded and influenced by its environment, is described by its boundaries, structure, and purpose and expressed in its functioning.

Your digestive tract is a system. The components include: mouth, stomach, and intestines. The components work together as a system to digest food and drink. The travel industry with buses, trains, planes, UBERs, Taxis, and hotels works together as a system to allow us to travel for business or pleasure. These systems rely on a group of interacting elements that act according to a set of rules to create a unified whole.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=54imm5ohdFE – by biomatrix simplicity underlying complexity

Further Learning

What are Systems? – Youtube.com
What is a System? – by Systems & Us

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Systems Thinking

Understanding system thinking is understanding a system, everyone, and everything that helps create, grow, and maintain that system. The system can include people, organizational design, physical and technical environments, other parts of the whole system.

Craig Larman and Bas Vodde begin to describe systems thinking in their book “Large-Scale Scrum: More with LeSS”:

“The first step of systems thinking is simply recognizing that there is a whole system, with elements that influence one another within a whole. These influences can have delays, create reinforcing cycles, and have unintended or hidden consequences, with a cascade of new influences.”

Suppose we are not looking at the whole system. Instead, we focus only on local optimation, which would be considered only part of the entire system (e.g., solving a business need/problem on the product interface (UI), regarded as local optimization). Local optimization might help us understand a business need from a UI customer interaction; however, it fails to understand how the UI will interact with the middleware, application layer, database layer, etc. This, to build products and services from a customer’s need, we need to know the entire system.

In August Bradley’s YouTube video under “Further Learning” section below, he discusses 6 steps to systems thinking:

  1. Identify and define the inputs, outputs, and movements of the system, setup
  2. Distinguish linear from circular, what functions in the system are linear, and what processes are circular
  3. Look for patterns
  4. Find the feedback loops, self-magnifying or self-diminishing patterns over time, step
  5. Understand the balancing processes that will help to maintain equilibrium within the system, step
  6. Study your system’s interaction with other systems.

These steps above will help you better understand how to identify, define, and maintain complex systems and how your system may exist within a much larger global system.

– by James Swanson (5 min)

Background Of The Term

System thinking was shared in a book by Craig Larman and Bas Vodde “Large-Scaled Scrum: More with LeSS” (Pearson Education, Inc. 2017)
A Case for systems thinking and system dynamics by Craig William Caulfield, Stanislaw P. Maj ECU Publication Pre. 20011

Further Learning

System dynamics WIKIPEDIA
Systems Thinking Intro – by August Bradley (10 min)
Systems Thinking – by Systems Innovation (5 min)

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