A home for my thoughts.

The Daily Scrum is not a Status Meeting

The Daily Scrum is not a status meeting. A status meeting is when everyone stands up, lists what they did yesterday, lists what they are doing today and whether they have any impediments. I would contend that nearly all people caught in this ritual often wonder what the value of it is, but quietly suffer through it anyway.

The Daily Scum is actually meant to be a highly engaging daily strategic meeting. It encourages everyone to talk about progress towards the sprint goal and then update the sprint plan to account for new information and developments. The meeting should be focused on the goal-- not the person.

Think of a huddle in American Football. After every play, the team gathers to quickly discuss how the game plan is progressing. The outcome of the huddle is an updated game plan (or continuation of the existing plan) to account for recent developments. Continuing the analogy: maybe our team has been having trouble getting a pass into the endzone so instead we will focus on getting into position for a field goal. The huddle is not every single player listing what they did last play and what they plan to do next play. The huddle will be an update on the situation, and if any particular player has some important information relating to the goal it should be brought up.

Yet, if you Google how to run a Daily Scrum-- nearly every result wrongly advises you to run a status meeting.

The Scum Guide was updated in 2013 to specifically address this common misconception:

"The importance of the Daily Scrum as a planning event is reinforced. Too often it is seen as a status event. Every day, the Development Team should understand how it intends to work together as a self-organizing team to accomplish the Sprint Goal and create the anticipated Increment by the end of the Sprint. The input to the meeting should be how the team is doing toward meeting the Sprint Goal; the output should be a new or revised plan that optimizes the team's efforts in meeting the Sprint Goal. To that end, the three questions have been reformulated to emphasize the team over the individual:

What did I do yesterday that helped the Development Team meet the Sprint?

What will I do today to help the Development Team meet the Sprint Goal?

Do I see any impediment that prevents me or the Development Team from meeting the Sprint Goal?"


Is your Daily Scrum a status meeting or a strategy meeting? Are you getting value out of your morning ritual?