One thought on “Sprints vs Pure Pull: GeePaw Takes A Stand

  1. All valid points, and in a *mature* team, this is definitely the right ethos.

    Question – is this development only, or does this include things like PO and business stakeholders? (I assume this is integrated, but worth asking).

    tl;dr – pull is the right way to go with a mature dev team supported by a mature ‘agile’ business.

    As a consultant, on new projects, however, the sprint model is often useful to get the team (a new team, new teams, cross-discipline, cross-business, multi vendor – many variants on a theme) working together.

    The ‘overhead’ that comes from sprints in a mature team is actually an efficiency in a lot of new projects, especially where a lot of team members or relevant stakeholders are not necessarily ‘agile’ or even aware of IT at all – where the traditional 1 hour meeting containing 10 useful minutes is still prevalent, and the ‘weight’ of a new project; gathering requirements, understanding the problem, getting everyone up to speed and settled in, etc, is actually a lot easier in a sprint format (compared to how a lot of businesses still operate) – also for the admin of people, getting regular calendar invites, time booked, schedules, etc, etc.

    For pull of any variety to work, there needs to be a steady stream of business stakeholder work already done, and that needs to also be a well oiled machine – the generic ‘requirements’ in whatever form they take; UX/User Testing, Data mechanisms, a product backlog of new features that have been prioritised and broken down, etc, etc – need to be available and ALSO working to match the pull model, or be integrated as part of it.

    All that said, I always aim for us to move from a sprint model into a Kanban/pull system, as the team matures and gets more efficient – however when we’ve tried to go straight into pull its got far too chaotic and difficult to manage *outside* the development team – and the dev are often left bored and lacking for work, or lacking the relevant info to do the required work (which means they crack on and have to do rework when the actual requirements are known).

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