Agile workshop with Lego Scrum simulation
A few weeks ago, I did a full day scrum workshop for a client with little experience with agile practices. I have worked with agile methods for more than 10 years now, and it struck me that for this workshop, it might be a good idea to go back to the roots, and start with “the whys” of agile: the agile manifesto.
Image source: http://atom.smasher.org/construction/?l1=Waterfall&l2=methods+will&l3=eventually&l4=get+you+ther
After spending quite some time explaining the values and principles of the manifesto, I took them through the scrum process, but explained every single scrum construct with references to the manifesto. It really made a lot of sense to the audience not to look upon scrum as a set of rituals, but rooted in values about people and trust. I personally felt that I learned something new about both things in that process as well. After introducing scrum, we had a look at how to the scrum template in TFS works. We took them through all of the features and related them to the Scrum artifacts and processes. After a lunch break, we did a scrum simulation with Lego. In the weekend before the workshop, I went out and bought 12 kgs of second hand Legos and washed them in a couple of pillow covers in the washing machine (http://thebrickblogger.com/2010/12/cleaning-dirty-lego/).
Picture source: http://www.moc-pages.com/image_zoom.php?mocid=187337&id=/user_images/21855/12664746271
This meant that we had lots of bricks to play with for less money than new ones would cost us.
The simulation was really fun to facilitate, we payed planning poker, did four full sprints (planning, work and review) and the participants were both stressed out to the max, and also learned a lot.
We finished the day with a debrief of lessons learned in the simulation and a check out exercise to close the day.
In case anyone can use it for your own day with scrum and legos, here is the agenda and some links for inspiration.
Check-in exercise (http://facilitatingagility.com/2012/03/15/facilitation-toolkit-activities-for-check-in/)
The agile manifesto (http://www.agilemanifesto.org/)
Introduction to Scrum (http://www.scrumguides.org/)
Introduction to Scrum with TFS (just did a demo)
Lego simulation (http://www.lego4scrum.com/)
Check out exercise (http://toolbox.hyperisland.com/check-in-check-out)
Also check out the cool site http://tastycupcakes.org/ for many more agile games (it was here I found the Lego game)