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Fridays Digest #19 Scrum, Hiring

Scrum

This week’s hot topic is Scrum Alliance. Scrum Alliance dysfunctions were revealed by Tobias Mayer in interview and a blog post State of Agile.

Scrum should not be codified in any way: there is no authoritative Scrum, there is just what we do. Any attempt to nail Scrum down to one definition will be a precursor to its death. The Scrum Guide comes very close to taking the life out of Scrum. The Scrum Alliance-threatened Scrum BOK will kill Scrum, for sure.

I personally see the danger as well. While I understand a desire to protect Scrum from blurring focus, it is also obvious that Scrum should evolve and improve in a very flexible way. BOK is too heavy and slow.

Hiring

I spent several hours this week improving my hiring skills. Interesting article and even more interesting discussion. I especially liked two questions and most likely will include them into future interviews:

Give me a normalized database structure that you’ll implement if you were to build gmail – incorporate conversations, messages, multiple message participants and labels.
Then, depending on the candidate, I build upon the question,and go into various optimizations possible, the ways caching would be implemented, sharding/splitting/de-normalization would be done with load, etc. etc. With good candidates, its always a very interesting discussion.

This one is a true gem:

My favorite: “Write a script that will save you one minute of time every day”

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