#42 – Down at the Backloch

Authors’ Comments:

This is our adaptation of the Irish song about one of Dublin’s most famous characters, Molly Malone.

It is a fact that there is no explicit project manager role in Scrum or agile in general. Only mentioning of “project” in the Scrum guide is when the concept of a sprint is described, where it says that “each sprint may be considered a project with no more than a one-month horizon”. The traditional tasks of a project are split between the Product Owner, Scrum Master and development team, and therefore, in pure Scrum/agile setups, the need for a project manager is non-existing.

However, when adopting agile ways of working in large enterprises that have not fully transformed themselves into agile, a gap will exist between the two ways of working. Even though it is everyone’s responsibility to minimize the gap through coaching, transparency and cooperation, project managers are often key in bridging the two sides by performing several vital tasks such as: aligning the processes of both worlds, managing interdepartmental dependencies and risks, helping Product Management/Owners include stage-gate deliveries like documents or test descriptions in their PBIs, and support Scrum Masters in shielding the development teams from the needs put forth by the waterfall world stakeholders. In this work, you will also identify the project managers who have the mindset and understanding needed to potentially transfer into an agile role.