Fabian Hornstein

4 min reading time

From the point of view of a Swagger: The last day.

We are writing 23.04.2019. The last day is dawning. While Sandra concentrates like never before on writing the supposedly most important lines of code of her life, she doesn't notice how close to her another stack of sticky notes has caught fire.

André's laptop starts smoking at another workstation. People run around in panic. One stumbles across a charging cable lying on the floor. He carries a large pile of paper on his arm, which flies in a high arc through the air. It's hectic. Telephones ring. Suddenly a siren sounds. A bug? Or just a fire alarm? You can hear somebody screeching in the background. There are stress and chaos.

Well, that doesn't quite correspond to reality. But the last day of a sprint is always exciting and sometimes stressful. What is that, the last day of a sprint? We at tapio work with SCRUM in a two-week rhythm. That means that every two weeks we in the team, just like the other teams at tapio, determine what we want to and can achieve in the next two weeks. After the two weeks, we openly show in the "review" what has happened. This also allows us to plan for innovations and changes quickly. That makes us agile. My role in the "Swaggers" team (yes, each team is allowed to choose its own name) is Product Owner. I am responsible for the work of the development team, and I make sure that the team always has enough to do (too little is practically not available at tapio 😉). So, what does a day at the sprint end look like? Let's take a look at the course of such a day, for example, Tuesday, 23.04.2019:

  • Usually, my day starts with a short PYD: Plan Your Day. What's on today? What else needs to be prepared for the day after the last day, the Planning Day? How can I support the team today?
  • Daily Meeting at the Markets Office. Each participant has one minute to present the most important tasks of the day. Unfortunately, one of us can't be here in person today and simply takes part remotely - our tools make this possible. Who does what? Does nothing overlap? Does anyone have any questions? Everything is fine. The team is coordinated, let's go.
  • During a customer testing the week before (testing potential innovations with customers is something we often do) a super quick-win (simple feature with high benefits) came up, which I would like to take into the next sprint. I hid in our room "TEAM" and drew a workflow on a whiteboard. We have at least one of them in almost every room – not only in meeting rooms. I'm sure this quick-win will make our customers' lives easier. But: Four eyes see more than two. I ask our service professional for his opinion. He listens, nods contentedly and comments: "I think it's great! When will it be available for our customers?" - We can release it in two weeks", I reply.
  • "Daily" of the Swaggers in DIANA JONES (also one of our rooms, better read this name out loud 😄). I'm usually a silent participant at the last daily meetings before the sprint so I can get an understanding of where the team is and if I can support them somehow. Today I can't make it, the team has everything under control anyway. Of course, they’re the Swaggers 🤓. One little thing: I'm supposed to review the change in the app "ServiceBoard" later and check if it fits.
  • The user story on the topic of the morning has been written, including the mockup. It says why we should do it and what we need to have to consider it finished.
  • Sporty lunch break, that's my favorite break activity. Around the corner, there is a nearby area with good fitness equipment and lots of space. Together with my colleague Sabrina, there is time for a workout. Afterward shower and back to the office.
  • Read, organize and answer emails from the morning. Meanwhile, there is something delicious between my keyboard and me that you can eat well with one hand. Sort the backlog afterward: Is everything in the right order for the planning day tomorrow?
  • During the ServiceBoard approval, I am shown the point raised in the daily. It's not quite round for me yet, but "we'll get it fixed today," I'm assured.
  • The Swaggers can be found in TEAM for the refinement. There is a relaxed atmosphere in TEAM. There are beanbags and a big flatscreen on which I present the latest user stories and features. The Swaggers get a feel for what's coming soon and appreciate the complexity of the user stories. The story from the morning is rated with "5". It is a bit more complex than expected by me, but the effort is definitely worth it.
  • Refinement is over. Today we want to use the time deliberately to finish of the current user stories, most were already refined last week. So back to coding.
  • Planning the sales process for a new product. Together with the Swaggers architect and our shop professional (a.k.a. CEO) we discuss the concept. How do we do this methodically? We put many large sticky notes on one of our large boards, push them back and forth and connect them with arrows and comments until we find the right solution. But there are still open points that I need to clarify in the next step.
  • During the review preparation, the Swaggers and I briefly discuss how we will present the innovations that we developed in the last two weeks to the other teams and stakeholders in the review tomorrow. Unfortunately, we didn't manage everything, two points are still open. "But we can still finish one of them, we want to achieve that," says one of the team members. I really like this mentality at tapio!
  • The last task of the user story is closed, and I can see the result: "Nice!
  • Closing-Beer in the office, together we start in the evening today. Some finished a bit earlier, others will join later on. I'm looking forward to the review tomorrow, it will be great!