Characteristics of an Ideal Scrum Team

May 5, 2020

Fond of Rugby? Then Scrum would be a recognizable term for you. The scrummage arrangement of rugby players works similar to that of the Scrum team.  Hirotaka Takeuchi and Ikujiro Nonaka in the mid 80’s defined a flexible and all-inclusive product development strategy where the development team works as a unit to reach a common goal. The rugby concept of a ‘Scrum’ (where a group of players form together to restart the game) was introduced to describe that product development should involve ‘moving the Scrum downfield’.

Scrum is an adaptive, light-weight, flexible, and effective framework. The Scrum framework is structured in such a way that it supports product and service development in all types of industries and in any type of project, irrespective of its complexity.

Since its inception, several Scrum practitioners and experts have continued to refine the Scrum conceptualization and framework. In recent years, Scrum has advanced as one of the most popular Agile frameworks and is now the preferred project delivery approach for many software development companies.

Although Scrum is generally used in the framework of software development team, its principles can be applied to any type of project and teamwork. It is a framework designed to deliver significant value quickly and throughout a project. A key strength of Scrum lies in its use of cross-functional, self-organized, and empowered teams who divide their work into short, concentrated work cycles called Sprints. And this is what best characterizes a Scrum team.

So, let us take a look at some of the characteristics of a Scrum team –

  • Scrum Team is sometimes referred to as the Development Team since they are responsible for developing the product, service, or any other result.
  • It consists of a group of individuals who work on the User Stories in the Sprint Backlog to create the Deliverables for the project.
  • It is important for the Scrum Teamto possess all the essential skills required to carry out the work of the project.
  • It is necessary to have a high level of collaboration to maximize productivity, so that minimal coordination is required to get things done.
  • The optimum size for a Scrum Team is six to ten members—large enough to ensure adequate skill sets, but small enough to collaborate easily. A key benefit of a six-to-ten-member team is that communication and management are typically simple and require minimal effort.

However, there may also be drawbacks to small team sizes. One major drawback is that smaller teams are more significantly impacted by the loss of a team member than larger teams, even for a short period of time. To address this problem, it may be possible for team members to have expert knowledge and skills outside their own specific role. It is also recommended to have back-up persons to replace any person who may have to leave the Scrum Team at any point of time.

“All for one and one for all”- this is the motto a Scrum team works with. In other words, all these characteristic traits significantly impact faster project delivery with better quality and customer acceptance.


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