For Quick Decisions, Depend on Deadlines

In Saturday’s (8/2/2013) Wall Street Journal, Dan Ariely suggests that to reach a decision, and often just to make progress, you need deadlines.  Deadlines ‘force’ people to take action.

This is what we have known with Scrum for years.  So, we have time-boxes all over the place (and I recommend using them more than just where prescribed by the bare framework of Scrum).

Based on research, Ariely says:

Because deadlines allow us to clarify our thoughts and create an action plan. They are good at getting people to perform a particular act, like submitting a grant proposal.

We feel indecisive, uncertain, unsure, and so we ‘lose the name of action’ as Shakespeare said.  The deadlines force us to act.  The time-boxes force us to act.

The first time-box in Scrum is the Sprint time-box. Say, 2 weeks, in which we must have working (tested) product.  It helps us get things done. Not just decided, but some small features are done.


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