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Scrum: The Art of Doing Twice the Work in Half the Time
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Scrum: The Art of Doing Twice the Work in Half the Time

4.19  ·  Rating details ·  11,406 ratings  ·  1,092 reviews
We live in a world that is broken. For those who believe that there must be a more efficient way for people to get things done, here from Scrum pioneer Jeff Sutherland is a brilliantly discursive, thought-provoking book about the management process that is changing the way we live.
In the future, historians may look back on human progress and draw a sharp line designatin
Audio CD, 6 pages
Published September 30th 2014 by Random House Audio (first published 2014)
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4.19  · 
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 ·  11,406 ratings  ·  1,092 reviews

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Romantical Skeptic
Once I got over the extremely self-aggrandizing tone of the author, I found some of the points quite useful. Basically this is a way of operationalizing the 80/20 rule. Here are the things I took away from it:

1. Good team size. 4-6 is optimal, 20 is way too many.
2. Multitasking is a myth - people who think they’re good at it, actually are the worst. The truth is people are serial processing, not parallel, and it takes the brain longer to switch gears so all you’re doing is slowing yourself down.
Jeff Sutherland
Jun 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
After Ken Schwaber and I wrote "Software in 30 Days" I felt we didn't have enough stories about Scrum outside of software development. This book is for the general business reader in any domain. It also tells the personal story of how my 11 years as a fighter pilot and another 11 years as a medical school professor affected the development of Scrum and the writing of the Agile Manifesto.
Mar 25, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I was trying to decide what to give this book as a rating. It wasn't what I was hoping for. I really don't want to hear how smart the creator is or how much better what he is doing is compared to other methodologies - what I want to hear is the nuts and bolts of how to make this idea work and what separates it from the rest of the herd. Frankly, nothing presented showed me any of what I was looking for. So it was going to be either a 3 (more or less neutral) or just pass by not giving any rating ...more
Jan 05, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
If you are interested in the historical context of scrum and want to read "around and about" it, this looks like a good book for you. But if you want to learn scrum this is not the book for you.
Apr 01, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I had high expectations for this book, but it left me feeling kinda blah about it.

Maybe I have business self-help book overload, I just wasn't blown away by this.

The majority of the book got skimmed as I wasn't sucked into reading each word and looking for the gold nuggets, the magic bullet.
Sherry Elswick
Mar 05, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Although there are kernels of wisdom and good advice on how to be productive, I found it difficult and tedious to wade through the author's biographical background and the data supporting his theory. This would have made a really good magazine article; a book wasn't necessary.
Jose Papo
Jan 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The book is basic for someone who already studies and practices Agile Methodologies for a long time. But the book deserves five stars because goes on the Why of Scrum, Why Scrum works and how it is adapted to the new realities of work in the 21st century.

Some of the interesting topics: The origins of Scrum, Team principles, Waste management, The importance of priorities and time management and how this fits with 'estimation' and how to begin implementing Scrum in your team or org.

So it's strong
Oct 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This isn't a guide to Scrum per-se. Which is probably good, since there are lots of guides to scrum at the practices at varying levels of details. What this book does is talk help you understand the value of scrum through stories. There is an appendix of scrum practices at the end. The book is full of war stories (both literally and figuratively), and Sutherland is clearly proud of how he, his family, and organizations he has worked with, have applied scrum. Reading this book will help energize ...more
Femina Ernest
May 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: tasted-papers
I can say , this is a "Myth & Rule Breaker" book. It is a revolution-creating , trend setting , thought-provoking , boldly truth spreading , Modern SDLC patterned , long - awaited successful-system-for-work telling Book. Jeff's metaphor for Scrum " Careful alignment, unity of purpose, and clarity of goal come together" proves that, he really spent worth-time to interrogate , analyse our present organisational system by "looking at how people ACTUALLY work, rather than how they SAY they work" ...more
Dec 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Five enthusiastic stars for Scrum. I wish I had read this book a long time ago. While a large part of this book is the "why" of Scrum, there is enough "how" in here to get you started, even though it does just scratch the surface. I dare you to read this book and not want to look for more resources online to help you implement Scrum. Whether you are managing a team of engineers, writing a book, or planning a wedding, Scrum can have a profound impact on your ability to complete a project on time ...more
May 23, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is not a Scrum how-to book. Rather, the story of its making and its philosophy. The concepts are highly adaptable to not just software, business, but everyday life as well. He talks of how to increase productivity of teams by improving communication, eliminating waste, and continuous improvement. I especially liked the idea is that team happiness is the greatest predictor of success. I enjoyed the conversational style and the positive, inclusive attitude.
Stijn Zanders
Jun 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Most valuable book in a long time! Besides that it is an easy and quick read. Don't see any reason not to read it ;)
Maksym Lysak
Aug 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A must read for people and teams who cares about their productivity. Key takeaways for me:
1. Great teams are: transcendent (alignment with a higher purpose), cross-functional (have all skills to complete the project), autonomous (influence planning and decision-making process, freedom to decide "how" to deliver). Optimal size 7 (+-2)
2. Iterate fast. Plan => Do => Check => Act. Week or two for each iteration (Sprint). At the end of the iteration have some version of the product/feature t
Alex Fürstenau
Nov 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: heard
Well, a book about Scrum from the father of Scrum.

It is not a book for beginners and it is not a book for experts (are there any books for experts at all?)

If you are in the HA state of using/implementing agile, you or team members tend to ask things like "Can we skip this?" or "Can we change this to that?".

This book explains the answer to these questions by stating why something is defined like it it is now.

All in all a great and amusing audio book which I highly recommend.
Romans Karpelcevs
Jan 12, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, tech
I already knew quite a lot about Scrum, but it was an interesting short read nonetheless. I forgot some things I learned years ago, and this book served both as reminder and gave me a few new ideas to try. I was surprised to learn Scrum was inspired by Lean, including waste elimination, reducing WIP, all that.
The book is a bit overpromising, though, and doesn't mention challenges or overcoming them. It's mostly about selling the idea than about any advanced implementation.
Robert Lintzen
Jan 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was familiar with the basics of SCRUM and some of the terminology but to read about the origins and the ideas behind it is very impressive. I'm definitely going to use the theory in my daily life!
Francisca Painhas
One of the most useful books I read, it explores the foundations and principles that make scrum work so successfully, and how it applies not only to the purpose it was created but to most fields.
Jay Hennessey
Jan 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: leadership
Get ‘er Done!

I LOVED THIS BOOK! Once again, I did the audio / kindle split. However, this time, I utilized Overdrive, the free online public library app - it is AMAZING. I signed up for 3 local libraries online; got my library cards and was off to the races. If you have not tried Overdrive, check it out.

There were so many take aways in this book that I absolutely loved. I should probably go back through the book before writing this, but historically, if I do not write now, it won’t get done.

Jan 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business-books
Very well written and engaging! For those who already know about scrum, this book would be a delight. It elaborates the intention behind the processes followed in Scrum rather than just the technique for the sake. If you follow scrum or intend to, this should be your first book to understand the idea. You can drill down on the details later. A must read for managers and CEOs!
Dec 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shared at my office that i liked the concepts (they are applicable not only at my work but also my personal projects, great) and was asked to prepare a presentation (mid January) so decided to listen to the book for the second time. Will also check an ebook version of it just before the presentation. If i had to present on all the books i went through, my rate of material retention would have been much MUCH higher :)
Lukasz Nalepa
Oct 07, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
This is one of the worst book I've read lately. It is packed full of my personal most hated characteristic: self-righteousness. It is also poorly translated, and it presents the Scrum as the best thing that happened since the decalog... I hate this narration, and I am sick of reading how Jeff single handedly invented Scrum, MVP and probably entire IT industry. Seriously, I can't recall any occurrence of Ken Schwaber in the entire book. Seriously, after reading this book I would be convinced that ...more
Work in small teams (max 17).
Sprint: demo/build something that works in a small timeframe.
Let the experts choose the way the problem will be solved.
This almost opposite from the waterfall model.
Daily standup: quick tasks and blocks of the day.
Do one thing at a time.
Don't do half of something, complete it and release it.
User stories: define briefly the "what". INVEST criteria.
Epic: collection of small stories.
Planning poker not hours.
Quantify/measure happiness.
Visibility in everything.
Keep impro
Mar 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: work
Scrum isn't just for developers. This book really made me think about how I try to multitask- and why I really can't-- and how I can work more efficiently to get more done, faster.
Josh Steimle
May 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Quite possibly the most important business book I've ever read, in terms of making a tangible impact on how I run my business, and how I want to run my life.
Henrik Haapala
Nov 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
1. The way the world works is broken
2. The origins of Scrum
3. Teams
4. Time
5. Waste is a crime
6. Plan reality, not fantasy
7. Happiness
8. Priorities
9. Change the world
Appendix: implementing Scrum – how to begin

Bandwagon effect
Burn down chart
Complex adaptive system
Cone of uncertainty
Daily stand-ups
Delphi method
Fundamental attribution error
Halo effect
Happiness metric
“Happy bubbles”
Incremental development and delivery
Muda = waste through outcomes
Mura = waste through
Jan 10, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business
TL;DR: This is a great book to get anyone involved in business, education, or other group-based activities to think about how they self-organize.

Let me say from the start that I really enjoyed this book. There are some true gems throughout, and I have found myself pondering their application in my own life since I finished it. On one hand, I don't want to necessarily list those ideas out, as I think doing so might undercut Sutherland's goal (he wants you to buy the book). On the other hand, I ha
Apr 13, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
I started reading this because I'd heard that the city I work for was going to start using scrum for projects. I wanted to get ahead and figure out what the fuss was all about. Now I know. Luckily not long after I started reading this book I got put on a scrum team. So, as I was reading I was actively using the scrum method to help my library with a project. Scrum has already shown itself to be a huge impact. It pushes teams to do their best and work to ensure things get done. It allows a diffus ...more
Yaser Awan
Jul 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A lot of books about methodologies are too execution oriented, focusing too much on the how. This book on the other hand spends 90% effort on giving an insight into philosophy of scrum. It was enlightening to see Jeff write from heart and really explain the “why” not just for the naysayers but equally important for believers and evangelists.
The book not just explains the product scenario but also gives a couple of examples on the project side (though it also goes beyond technology endeavours th
Kind of a wow book, but definitely has a your-mileage-may-vary feel to it. But reading it has me feeling excited about doing scrum, and I've been doing some form of scrum for a long time. This is not a reference book, there is very little what here. Instead it's all about why. The books is messy and a bit uneven. But a quick read as all proselytizing manifestos should be.
Denny Yusuf
Mar 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A great book about Scrum. If you're a practitioner of Scrum, besides the eye-opening how-to-use knowledge, reading this book will give you more confidence using Scrum with brilliantly describing the reason why every element of Scrum exists.
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HCS Book Club - Scrum Discussion 1 2 May 10, 2019 04:14PM  

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Sutherland is a Graduate of the United States Military Academy, a Top Gun of his USAF RF-4C Aircraft Commander class[citation needed]. He flew more than one hundred missions over North Vietnam[citation needed]. After 11 years in the military, he became a doctor at the University of Colorado School of Medicine[citation needed]. Here he got involved in data collection and IT systems development.

“Multitasking Makes You Stupid. Doing more than one thing at a time makes you slower and worse at both tasks. Don’t do it. If you think this doesn’t apply to you, you’re wrong—it does.” 9 likes
“No Heroics. If you need a hero to get things done, you have a problem. Heroic effort should be viewed as a failure of planning.” 8 likes
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