Poor communication, missed commitments, lack of transparency (internal and external). Does that sound familiar?
According to Dan Murphy of Abila, speaking during the AICPA Not-for-Profit Industry Conference, those problems and more afflict many organizations, and the solution is to get agile.
Agile means building software incrementally at the start of a project rather than trying to deliver it all at once at the end. It follows these steps:
Create the team. Select a small team (six or fewer) responsible for development, implementation and review of project/delivery. Select a scrum master.
Create the backlog. The backlog is a collection of “stories.” Work as a team.
Time to sprint. Decide on sprint length (e.g. two weeks). Create a spring calendar.
Planning. Schedule backlog grooming and sprint planning. Be sure that all stories are sufficiently documented and explained.
Stand up. Have a daily planned “stand up” meeting time, face-to-face when possible. Keep it short (usually 15 minutes). The scrum master is in charge.
Track progress. Track sprint progress on a “burn down chart.” Update the sprint tasks daily.
Retro. At the end of a sprint, have a retrospective meeting. Discuss what went well and why, and what could/should be improved and how it will be done.
As we celebrate our 36th year, NPT remains dedicated to supplying breaking news, in-depth reporting, and special issue coverage to help nonprofit executives run their organizations more effectively.