In Uncle Bob’s Post about Developer Certification, he mentions hiring as the best way to find candidates, making developer certification about finding developers you can hire. And in many ways that makes sense – if you want the best, adjust your hiring process to find the best.
But that’s not why the Certified Scrum Developer (CSD) is around.
Last post I mentioned that the CSD was created because Ken Schwaber and the Scrum Alliance were being asked to help with teams that had adopted Scrum, but weren’t seeing the results they wanted because they didn’t have the skills necessary to ship software – working software – that frequently. In other words, they didn’t have a problem *finding* people, they had a problem *training* people.
ScrumMaster job in MA. Great opportunity. Managers finished CSM class today.
They were looking for a ScrumMaster, but they weren’t planing on rehiring their developers. I can see the conversation going like this:
Bob 1: Boy, that CSM class sure was insightful. How are we going to convert our team?
Bob 2: Well, we’ll need a ScrumMaster. Ain’t nobody I’d trust to do that here! Haha
Bob 1: [Laughs heartily]
Bob 2: And I suppose we’ll put our team through CSM training.
Bob 1: Sounds great to me!
It sounds silly, but in reality it isn’t. I know, because I’ve seen it in several training classes. In fact, when I took my CSM with Jeff Sutherland and Mitch Lacey, 90% of the class was from the same company. I asked the people at my table why they were there and the answer was classic: “Because our manager told us to come”.
Now, let’s say we have the CSD in place. Bob 1 and Bob 2 will now just send the development team to the CSD training, the Business Analysts and Project Managers to CSM training, and the managers to CSPO training. And then we’ll be agile!
Lessons from GM
In 1983, Toyota took over one of the worst plants General Motors had – the Fremont, California plant. They turned it completely around in 2 years. But when GM tried to take the practices that Toyota was doing at the plant and apply them to other plants, it failed miserably. Why?
Because practices without principles are worthless.
Toyota’s practices around Lean Manufacturing were important, but more important and much more vital were concepts around Empowering Workers, Stop the Line, and other fundamental concepts which counter traditional command and control management styles.
But it seems so easy, doesn’t it? Sprinkle a little product backlog here, a stand-up there, some TDD over there, and you have a recipe for product success? Or, rephrasing in Slashdot lingo:
So changing our hiring practices is great, and worthy. But that’s not why the CSD is around. And it’s what makes it so dangerous – it’s an implicit assumption that if you just take the trifecta of certifications, you can become a Certified Scrum Organization, and won’t that be keen! And swell!
Let me know how that works out for you.