Have you ever wondered why daily Scrum has to be daily? This is a common question that surfaces in discussions about Scrum – whether the daily Scrum truly needs to be conducted everyday. And guess what – I asked the very same question about 20 years ago, and I asked even more questions. “Why do we have to use points for estimation?” The answers I got for my questions were mostly, “This is the new ways of working, this is part of Scrum, this is …., just do it.”, which was neither convincing nor motivating.

From Scrum learning, we all understand why we should have daily Scrum. Though in reality, there is a long list of reasons that people wonder whether daily Scrum has to be really daily.

Now, the question is how we ideally deal with the situation where people challenge whether daily Scrum should be daily?

No matter why and how you hear this question, let’s explore how we can approach this question from teams already working with Scrum. “Should daily Scrum really occur daily?”

“Yes, daily Scrum is supposed to do daily.”, “Yes, this is prescribed by the Scrum framework.”, “Yes, this is what our management team wants us to follow.” None of these responses motivate people, add value or improve the situation. So ideally, we don’t tell people that they have to do it, because they have to. You know how much I highlight the importance of positive energy while we work with individuals and teams.

Then, how would the conversation look like then? Certainly, the exact conversation depends on the context, the relationship you have with the speaker, the practices the team has adopted and more.

The tips on how to have the conversation below are not sequential. They are intended to help open a different type of conversations.

Tip 1 – What value do you get from our daily Scrum?

This question shows curiosity and interests about the speaker, and helps the speaker reflect on some value they have experienced from daily Scrum.

Tip 2 – If we could do one thing to improve the value of our daily Scrum, what might that be?

This again helps the speaker feel that you value their thoughts and opinions, and helps elicit more insights from the speaker as well.

Tip 3 – On a scale of 0 to 10, 10 meaning the most valuable while 0 meaning not at all, where would you land our daily Scrum as it is today?

This question helps put the speaker into thinking mode as well, and they have to do the hard work of evaluating what numeric number would be a good fit based on their experience. It could take a few seconds for the speaker to come back with an answer.

Now let’s work with a little math.

Now assume the speaker gives an answer, X, on a scale of 0 to 10. As the speaker asks about whether daily Scrum has to be daily or not, most likely the speaker will not give it 10 out of 10. If so, the speaker would like to have it everyday. So now, we are looking at, X is somewhere between 0 to 9.

Let’s assume it is a 6 at this moment.

So a nature follow up question would be:

What would need to happen for you to rate our daily Scrum to 7.

Let’s assume it is a 3, the speaker feels at this moment. While there is nothing wrong to ask about “What would need to happen for you to rate it to 4?” It may be helpful to explore, what make you give our daily Scrum a 3, but not a 2?

Let’s assume it is a 0, the speaker gives. A follow up question can be, if magic can happen during today’s daily Scrum and you will rate our daily Scrum higher than 0, what would that be?


While you are reading, you possibly have felt – the above questions are all part of a passive action to a team member’s question or comments about daily Scrum.

Tip 4 – Great leaders embrace curiosity.

If your role is a ScrumMaster, you can always add in a curiosity question at the end of daily Scrum.

How do we feel about today’s daily Scrum?

If there is one small thing we can do to make tomorrow’s daily Scrum an event better event, what would you recommend?

With these 4 tips, I am sure you will first get some nice conversations going, and also gradually you will start to move into asking mode.

Have an even better daily Scrum tomorrow!

Finally, don’t forget to join our global community of agile practitioners – we have practitioners from 81 countries in our community, across different industrials and a lot of diversities.

Evelyn is a Professional Certified Coach, Coach Mentor, and Coach Supervisor, and she is also a Certified Enterprise Coach and Certified Team Coach.

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