Make a good sprint review

making a good user story
making a good user story

Sprint Review

The sprint review of the Scrum is intended to present the product (the work done) during the current Sprint. In order to be complete, it is at the end of Sprint just before the meeting of Sprint Retrospective.

I’m doing a full article on this meeting because I still see teams who don’t really understand it can be much more complete than we imagine at the base.

Who is invited to the Sprint Review?

In a classic scrum we have to invite the scrum team and the stakeholders linked to the product; but in fact in the actual Scrum, we always try to invite different customers (key users) to share the information to the maximum number of the people.

In small startups where there are few scrum team, the agile coach advise to invite the entire company to each session especially if the development of the product is the core business. The team can create links with its customers and with the persons in the company who have visibility on the projects progress.

In general, the Product Owner and the Scrum Master invite the different customers to join them during this meeting. They will create a real link with this meeting with the differents customers of the team.

Sprint Review Process

When we start doing advanced scrum and invite our clients to join us, we have to do a minimum to present things; your presentation of the work completed must take a little commercial aspect. The Product Owner and the Scrum Master will take the opportunity to sell the work completed.

A nice Slide (or Power Point) presented on the big screen will embellish your oral presentation. There are many models of slides on Internet today that can help you make a clean presentation. Some people will favor an simple display of Jira that will do the job but less attractive visually.

The Product Owner and the Scrum Master will be standing in front of the customers and the team to present the work completed during the Sprint. They will invite developers to demonstrate a new feature completed or a new product completed. It is important during the sessions that all developers participate in this oral exercise (trying to invite the more shy).

Then they will be able to take the opportunity to present some revealing indicators (burndown chart, burnup chart, donut impediment …) to pass messages or explain fears of delay.

They always end up asking people if they have questions in order to create debates or ensure that everyone leaves with with a maximum of information.

Indeed, the Sprint Review is often underestimated but it may be one of the best ways to have transparency (one of the 3 pillars of Scrum).

When the Sprint review is over, I advise you to send the presentation to all clients (even the absent ones) and to the developer team; if you do the Sprint Review on friday afternoon, I can advise you to wait the next monday morning to send it in order to have a better chance of being watched by the absentees.

Sprint review: Points of attention

The first Sprint review session are often very exciting and you can get a lot of people; the results of these sessions are often very well received by the guests.

On the other hand, the Scrum Master and the Product Owner must make sessions of 30 minutes maximum and never exceed the initial time; it’s silly, but if these meetings last, your guests may miss more sessions for lack of time. Give them a full meeting but avoid all superfluous.

Do not invite all key users each time, but invite those who are affected by the work completed to move them only at critical times; you will have more chance to have them at each session (or more often at least).

Do not always keep the same format because it will eventually annoy your interlocutors. Changes of rhythm, format, style of your slides will reduce this impression of monotony. If you feel this desertion during your meeting sessions, it’s too late. And the return at the normal situation will be complicated.

Indeed you can conclude that the work of Scrum Master and Product Owner is not easy to hold.

Unforeseen during Sprint review?

There are obviously unforeseen things like a sick Product Owner or a sick Scrum Master; no worries, take advantage of these unforeseen to make the change (like to involve a developer exceptionally). If that sounds like a problem at first sight, I think that you can have the advantage of fighting the monotony of the meeting if you try this type of last-minute change.

On the other hand, I insist on the fact that we must hold the meeting even in case of absence of the Product Owner or Scrum Master. It’s very bad to cancel it.

A demonstration can be missed for X reasons; the scrum master have to improvise to enjoy about these bug to bring a  bit of humor. A Scrum Master accustomed to his role often intervenes to make this moment rather nice.

Conclusion sprint review

The Sprint Review may be more than just a meeting and can become a real dialogue with your clients. If your clients have more involved, they will be understandable during difficult times.

How did you adapt your Sprint Review to your company to make it even more useful

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About Judicaël Paquet 190 Articles
Judicaël Paquet (agile coach and senior devops) My activities in France and Switzerland: - agile transformation architect - customized agile training - sensitization and manager coaching - agile maturity audits and situations - agile coaching (teams, orga, product owner, scrum master, agile coach) Specialties: scrum, kanban, management 3.0, scalability, lean startup, agile method.

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