Transforming to Agile is a culture change and all cultures have rules so that everyone understands their expected behavior. DAD has inherited some of the basic rules from the XP world. Each time I present these rules in the training course, inevitably they end up on the list of things that “freaked us out”. That means to me that the rules are really important and that the community needs to be talking about them and getting a clear understanding and acceptance.
Let me first address The Rights of Everyone:
To be treated with respect
Whether you are going Agile or not, this is a good thing to promote. Let people be heard, don’t talk over people, listen to what they have to say, no name calling etc etc. Every one of your team mates brings something of value to the team so show them the respect you expect in return.
To work in a “safe environment”
This goes hand in hand with treating people with respect. Everyone needs to feel they are in a safe environment, that they can offer input without being mocked or ridiculed. For everyone to freely collaborate they need to know that their input is valued.
To produce and receive quality work based upon agreed standards
Establish the work standards up front. Make sure everyone on the team understands the standards and agrees to the standards. No one can be expected to meet moving standards.
To own the estimation process
The people doing the work get to do the estimations so that estimations are not being imposed on the team
To determine how teams resources are allocated
The team has the right to determine who is going to work on what task when. The team knows the strengths and weaknesses of the team better than anyone else so they know best, how to meet the team goals
To be provided good faith information and decisions in timely manner
For the team to be effective they need good information to work with and information must be available when they need it. Any delays in providing requirements or answers to questions will reduce team productivity.
To own the team’s processes and be enabled to improve them
DAD recommends an initial process but as the team matures the team has the right to adjust and improve the process so that it works for them. The whole point of doing retrospectives is to have the team reflect on how well the last iteration was performed, keep doing the activities that worked and fix the activities that didn’t.
See the post Responsibilities of Everyone where I discuss the other side of the coin and look at responsibilities that pay for these rights.