After she agreed to try it, they identified the tasks to be done with a Blitz Planning session, created a Scrum board and held two one week-long sprints to complete the job. As the wedding approached and things got hectic, they stuck to the plan ("It was definitely a challenge," Naidu said) and were soon exchanging rings and "I dos."
Image credit: Hemant Naidu
Naidu says he would do it again -- but what about his wife? "I think my wife would be on board [to do it again]," he says. "She did a good job of keeping the Scrum board up-to-date so that was a good indication that she found it useful enough to stay involved."
Apparently she bought it into enough that she also suggested that they use Scrum to manage selling their house (which they're currently in the process of doing).
There's seemingly no end to the type of projects that Agile/Scrum can be used to manage.
If you find yourself using Agile to plan your wedding, and you notice that the church you're getting married in seems a bit disorganized, you may want to suggest that they too use Agile to manage their affairs. Sutherland's wife is a former Unitarian Universalist minister who also used Scrum to manage her church ("Scrum in church? Of course! How else did God create the world in seven days?").
Once you've successfully pulled off your Agile-organized wedding, you can keep using it to manage your new household, the birth of your bundles of joy, large family gatherings and keeping the kids in line and on time for school.
Scrum boards can also be used to replace the old honey-do list. "We have a Scrum board in our kitchen," Sutherland says. Over Saturday morning coffee they review their backlog of tasks and priorities, which helps them to complete tasks more efficiently, leaving Sundays free.
But, while it's easy to understand why developers who use Agile and Scrum as part of their jobs would adapt it to everyday use, how do non-technical people adapt to it?
In general, Sutherland says, it's easier introducing Scrum to non-technical teams, than it is to traditional software groups, since their minds aren't stuck in the traditional (waterfall) way of doing things. He also says that the simple framework and language of Scrum makes adoption by non-developers generally painless. The biggest challenge he finds for non-technical folks implementing Scrum is simply getting more organized.
As Hemant Naidu said about his fiancée and Scrum, "If I had to guess I would think that she found the Blitz Planning session the most useful. It let us just blurt out all the things that needed to get done, and gave us the opportunity to talk about each of them, what each of them involved, and how big of a task it was."
Finally, while Sutherland feels that almost any profession can benefit from Agile/Scrum, some most likely never will due to other concerns.
"It would be a great help to the legal profession but, of course, that goes against their business model of billable hours."
Have you used Agile or Scrum for non-tech projects? Let us know!