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The Backlog is a biweekly newsletter about the undervalued and overlooked in modern product development. It covers product development, self organization, and productivity. I include methods, books, and write about my own experience. Subscribe to get new posts straight to your inbox.
A picture of a user story map.

Enhancing product clarity: the why, how, and what of User Story Mapping

A user story map visually depicts the entire backlog along the user journey while simultaneously showing the priority of user stories associated with each step. User story mapping is an excellent communication aid getting everyone on the same page and it allows for easy definition of releases. It is where you can clearly see the steps from MVP to fully fledged solution.

Keep quiet – the rare ability to endure and withstand silence

We often feel the need to immediately fill silence with answers, comments, or questions. And I get it, being in a group where nobody speaks for some moments can be extremely uncomfortable and awkward. Being able to withstand the urge to say something in those moments of silence is not easy to do.

Sprinting to success with Scrum: how to make sure it is done effectively

In its essence, agile product development is a mindset for dealing with an uncertain environment. The best way to do that is to find the path forward one step at a time. This means delivering frequently, observing how users react and interact with the product, and adjusting the approach for the next iteration according to the feedback and observations. Scrum is the manifestation of exactly this approach within a project management method.
A picture of the word Change, symbolizing that a retrospective means changing how we work.

The sprint retrospective – why is it needed and what are best practices?

Along with the refinement, I find the sprint retrospective to be the most important ceremony within the Scrum Framework. It embodies one of the main features of agile product development, iterative improvements. This is, in my view, at the heart of agile product development. Iteratively improving not only applies to the product itself but also to the developmental process, the method of collaboration, and used frameworks.