Luke Melia

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September 11, 2006

Iteration planning and the two minute timer

Mike Cohn had an idea that I’m looking forward to trying. Our team uses planning poker as an estimate technique. (BTW, Mike mentioned that he’s got a tool coming for playing planning poker with distributd teams (nothing there yet). Anyway, in planning poker, when you disagree, you discuss and those discussions can sometime go on a looooong time, leading eventually to consensus but also to frustration and burnout. Mike suggested using a simple 2 minute egg timer that any member of the team and start whenever s/he feels like the discussion is going on too long. When the timer goes off, everyone shows their estimates again. If there is agreement, you can move on; if not, you keep talking, but anyone can trigger a vote again in two-minutes by starting the timer.

Seems like a good way to stay focused and be able to bring the team back to estimation, even if one or two people are dominating the conversation.

One Response to “Iteration planning and the two minute timer”

  1. Aslak Helles√ły chimed in:

    You may want to check out my Planning Poker Timer: http://aslakhellesoy.com/planning_poker_timer/index.html

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