Book Review: The Elements of Scrum

I’ve just finished reading “The Elements of Scrum” by Chris Sims and Hilary Louise Johnson.

Elements of Scrum consists of three parts; Introduction to Agility, Scrum, and Supporting Practices. First section of the book depicts a typical week of a Scrum Team. This start gives an overview information about agile methodology and scrum. The book contains lots of anecdotal explanations and historical examples that makes the book easy to read and easy to understand. Before introducing the Scrum methodology, authors give reasons why to choose agile methodology by comparing waterfall and iterative development cycle models.

Chris is a hands on scrum trainer and this book is the result of Chris’s trainings about scrum. Thus it doesn’t bore readers by theoretical information, it contains lots of real world tips and techniques to real world problems.

Elements of Scrum gives a foundation in the basics of Scrum methodology. Any reader at any level of knowledge can get some new perspectives from this book. I highly recommend this book if you want to learn Scrum fundamentals.

Some of my highlights:
 [stextbox id=”info”]Being a scrum team member isn’t about getting your job done, it’s about getting the job done.[/stextbox][stextbox id=”info”]Being agile is about building a flexible process that anticipates and embraces change, allowing the team to adapt to new requirements and unexpected developments.[/stextbox]
[stextbox id=”info”]If you spend the same amount of time drafting your documentation as Tolstoy spent writing War and Peace, you may find yourself treating your masterpeice as if it were the work product itself.[/stextbox]
[stextbox id=”info”]Scrum is not a silver bullet that will magically allow a team to deliver fixed scope, by a fixed time, using fixed resources.[/stextbox]

The Elements of Scrum –

Chris Sims is a Certified Scrum Trainer, agile coach, and recovering C++ developer who helps software development teams improve their productivity and happiness.Chris is the founder of Agile Learning Labs as well as the Bay Area Agile Managers Support Group. He is co-author of The Elements of Scrum and has published over 50 articles on agile topics at InfoQ. Even more of his writing can be found on the Agile Learning Labs blog. Before starting Agile Learning Labs, Chris made a living in roles such as: ScrumMaster, Product Owner, Engineering Manager, Project Manager, Software Engineer, Musician, and Auto Mechanic.

Hillary Louise Johnson is an author and former business journalist who has written on innovation, technology and pop culture for Inc Magazine and the Los Angeles Times. As an intellectual property consultant she has drafted numerous technology patents. She has been editor-in-chief of several print and online publications and is now Agile Learning Labs’ creative director.


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