As a team transitions to using Scrum and Agile, finding the proper sprint duration is likely something they will not give enough thought to. The team will likely just pick an arbitrary duration and set about to make that work. That is certainly one way to do it, but there is a real danger that this initial sprint duration becomes the norm without a second thought. I would caution against this idea. I find that it is important to understand how the scheduling works for sprints, and what a sprint of a given duration actually contains.
This blog is a continuation of the blog that I wrote about the importance of difficulty based estimations in the sprint process. In that blog, we covered how I feel it is important to distance the team from thinking in terms of time and to think of difficulty instead. Naturally, the next question to answer is: “How do I use those metrics to measure the burndown, and to a greater extent, the velocity of the team?“
We all know the feeling. You sit down in a Sprint Planning meeting and a project manager walks in. The instant that he sits down you can tell there will be some tension. He wants to do it. He is compelled to. He will absolutely try to force real world hours on your estimations. He lives in a world of black and white and the only justification of the work that you are doing is measured in time. He will take your Story Points, and turn them into something they are not. Time. If you can empathize with the story above, you are not alone. This blog post will talk about tackling the ideology change I believe is needed to ensure accurate estimations.