Everyone learns a little differently. A student in one of our 3Back Scrum training classes must learn visually because he/she sketched this diagram to remember agile teams. It’s astonishingly detailed, and provides a clear rundown of how agile Scrum teams are organized. We didn’t know it before, but an excellent way to remember agile teams (R.A.T.) is through a typically maligned animal, the rat. Let’s break down the diagram.
Sitting on top, represented by the head, is the product owner. The product owner is the team member with the most at stake on an agile team. All of the team collaborates to develop a product or service that the product owner is ultimately accountable for. The head and brain of the R.A.T. assure that the rest of the team is functioning properly so they can present the best product or service to the outside world.
In the R.A.T. diagram, the eyes and ears represent the vehicles to great collaboration and communication. A necessary part of any well-formed agile team is focusing on people. Agile team members need to hear feedback, see results, and remember to please the stakeholders.
Of course, in this diagram it isn’t particularly appealing to be the ScrumMaster. You’d be hard pressed to use rat’s behind as a compliment, but I believe the R.A.T. diagram pulls it off. Eliminating waste, and maintaining useful materials is a pivotal part of a Certified ScrumMaster’s role.
You’ll also notice the hearts sprawled across the rat’s body which provide insight into even more Scrum concepts. There are shared goals and passions that keep the team focused on the people who will use their products and services. As the banner says, “It’s all about working together.”
Perhaps most amazing about this sketch, is that the artist transformed a rat into a lovable, teaching creature. A rat hasn’t provided this intricate a lesson since Splinter told a story.
Not only does this rat provide an intricate diagram of the agile teams 3Back teaches, it could also break down the barrier between rat and human relations. Rats are often ridiculed animals, including being hidden from the knowledge of their own kind.
This rat is reaching out an olive branch. An opportunity to form an agile team with the goal of learning the intricacies of a Scrum team. In return, 3Back will grant this R.A.T. the title of honorary ScrumMaster for a clear, demonstrated understanding of agile teams. Let us know if you’ve got a unique way to remember agile teams or anything else related to being a great Scrum team.