• Is velocity important?

Scrum is constantly a race to get stuff done and meet estimates. Quite often, the estimates turn out to be BS.

Here’s the rub: 90% of everything I’ve ever written has gone in the bin.

This means, if I just concentrated on doing the useful stuff, I would be 10X better than I am now.

What does that mean?

“Simplicity–the art of maximizing the amount of work not done–is essential.”

The problem is that estimation only addresses a single risk: runway risk/time resource. It says nothing about other risks that you might bump into.

Why is all my code in the bin? I guess either it was badly written (which, probably it isn’t, given that it’s probably not objectively worse than the 10% that is in production) or, more likely, it didn’t address Feature RIsk properly, or, it was useful, but people didn’t find out about how amazing it was. Or, it was built to work on top of X, but then X was decomissioned (Dependency Risk) or, the budget was cut from the department and there was no funding (Dependency Risk… but maybe caused by Feature RIsk)?

No estimates says forget about trying to get the numbers right, because you can’t. What’s better than that? Let’s try and focus on reducing that 90% of waste by thinking about risks other than time.

“Ian: Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn’t stop to think if they should. “ - Jurassic Park.

Risk First PLanning Game:

X: time Y: importance

Place risks on the board (as well as goals). Try and mitigate risks with actions. Consider whether

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Rob Moffat
Rob Moffat Author of Risk-First Software Development. Developer. Working in the UK.