Ok, this round of pet peeves is centered on demos, or sprint reviews.

  • Purpose:  This is not a one way status meeting where the dev team just reports (even shows) what is done.  Yes, it starts there but this is to generate conversation for new PBL items, for changing PBL items, for further understanding goals/roadmap.  This is also an exciting opportunity to recognize the work that is being completed together as a team.
  • Simulation:  If you have to spend hours to prepare to demo, something is wrong.  If you have to create a “simulation” and not demo working software, something is wrong.
  • No attendance:  I wish I could say I’ve never witnessed a demo where there was no customer representation – product owner, customers, etc.
  • No discussion:  Be careful to not fall into the “check, we’re done” mindset when it comes to demos.  Remember the value of discovery and engage in conversations on whether this meets the needs, what else could be done, etc.   
  • One presenter:  This is an opportunity for self-accountability and pride. One might argue that person x is shy but how will he/she do their best work if they are not engaged in the conversation.  This is also a skills growth opportunity.
  • Nothing to demo:  Who would want to come together and say we have nothing done?  That’s not motivating.  That’s not comforting.  That’s not helpful.  Break your work down further in E2E slices. 

As much as these are pet peeves, they are mine and as a leader that doesn’t mean I get to simply judge others. Instead, these serve as opportunities for others and for me to grow. If this stuff was easy, I wouldn’t be sharing.

What are your demo pet peeves?

Tricia Broderick

Tricia Broderick

Tricia Broderick is a leadership and organizational advisor. Her transformational leadership at all levels of an organization, ignites growth of leaders and high performing teams to deliver quality outcomes. Tricia has more than twenty years of experience in the software development industry. She is a highly-rated trainer, coach, facilitator and motivational keynote speaker. Beyond her extensive knowledge and skills, her biggest offering is inspiring people to believe anything is possible.

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