By Mark C. Layton

Part of Agile Project Management For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Most projects have stages. Agile projects include seven recurring events for product development:

  • Project planning: The initial planning for your project. Project planning includes creating a product vision statement and a product roadmap, and can take place in as little time as one day.

  • Release planning: Planning the next set of product features to release and identifying an imminent product launch date around which the team can mobilize. On agile projects, you plan one release at a time.

  • Sprint: A short cycle of development, in which the team creates potentially shippable product functionality. Sprints, sometimes called iterations, typically last between one and four weeks. Sprints can last as little as one day, but should not be longer than four weeks. Sprints should remain the same length throughout the entire project, which enables teams to plan future work more accurately based on their past performance.

  • Sprint planning: A meeting at the beginning of each sprint where the scrum team commits to a sprint goal. They also identify the requirements that support this goal and will be part of the sprint, and the individual tasks it will take to complete each requirement.

  • Daily scrum: A 15-minute coordination and synchronization meeting held each day in a sprint, where development team members state what they completed the day before, what they will complete on the current day, and whether they have any roadblocks.

  • Sprint review: A meeting at the end of each sprint, introduced by the product owner, where the development team demonstrates the working product functionality it completed during the sprint to stakeholders, and the product owner collects feedback for updating the product backlog.

  • Sprint retrospective: A meeting at the end of each sprint where the scrum team inspects and adapts their processes, discussing what went well, what could change, and makes a plan for implementing changes in the next sprint.