Whenever I start teaching an Agile/Scrum class or working with a Scrum or Kanban Team, I try to create an euphoric environment. It is not to provide a false sense of reality. Though in most transformation, I have seen saddness and struggles more than happiness and celebrations. The environment is built to give them joy; a sense of being that comes when you make peace with who you are, why you are and how you are. The only way to maintain residency in this environment is be transparent with yourself, constantly analyzing and inspecting yourself, in order to grow yourself through adaptation.
But why go through all of that, you might ask. I remember hearing John Wooden speak about a verse that change the way he thought about success.
At God's footstool to confess, A poor soul knelt and bowed his head. "I failed," he cried. The Master said, "Thou didst thy best, that is success."
Success, even with missing the goal; but only because the poor soul did their best?
It was hard to accept at first. Like Ricky Bobby, I believed “If you ain’t first, you’re last.” Failure exists. There was a line between success and failure. If your goal was not achieved, you failed; you missed the mark. Whether in competition or just a personal goal; if you did not win or achieve your goal, you failed. It was that black and white. But the world is filled with colors; it is not that simple. It is complex, complicated, and frustratingly confusing. The world contains uncontrollable circumstances that are both subjective and bias. If we give our all, the 110%, and miss the mark then life says we failed. Regardless of whether or not before the game started, we only had a fraction of a percent chance to succeed. Ofcourse, that’s life; it is not fair.
As an Agile Coach/Scrum Master, I’m not concerned with life being fair. I’m expecting life to throw curve balls, complications, and unknown unknowns. I want the classes and those teams to be focus on doing their best and learning from the journey. Failure only exists when they stop doing one or both of those two. As long as they are doing their best and learning, we will always have success, even when missing the goal.