How does your sprint look? Are you on track? What are your blockers?  ….. Why is it trending upwards?! Ahh!

In the world of Agile development, I’ve actively been part of teams adopting Scrum as the process of choice. It’s a great alternative to the traditional waterfall process and we have proven real success in my organization by switching to Scrum.  Once I begin explaining what Scrum is to an executive who is hearing about it for the first time, I usually show our Kanban board and Burndown chart.  As a designer — it’s a lot easier to show something while explaining 🙂 

On occasion, this presentation will occur during a sprint that may not be going as planned and it doesn’t follow the ideal burn down slope we all love to see. At this point, I will show the following graphic which I developed to help align everyone on the team to help explain what might be affecting the team’s performance during a sprint.

Burndown-charts_agile-manifesto-01

I use this chart as a clear visual for the entire team and post this up on our shared home page. I also post a slightly modified version of this with the actual sprint burndown chart so we can compare it to the ideal state. Our team has found this quite helpful over the past few projects because it keeps us focused and aware of outside distractions that may be unknowingly affecting the team.

Burndown-charts_v2