I’ve been reading the wonderful User Story Mapping by Jeff Patton (Can’t recommend this book enough btw).
A point Jeff makes numerous times is that the eponymous user story template is merely an aid to conversation, in and of itself it is of little value – the whole aim is to stimulate a conversation above and beyond the story.
Sounds obvious right? queue eye rolls, we’ve heard this all before. But you’d be surprised how easy it is to fall into the trap of backlog completeness == number and breadth of user stories defined, and number of user stories defined held as proof that the conversations have happened – this isn’t always true.
User stories are comforting, they have a defined template, they are usually short, simple and make perfect sense. Its just that on their own they convey very little. They should be viewed as a reference card only; they are a reference and output of a wider and more encompassing discussion. The true value is in the discussion. [Read more…]