Oh - you don't have a definition of what aspects a user story that is done will exhibit. Well then, you need to create a list of attributes of a done story. One way to do this would be to Google 'definition of done' ... here let me do that for you: http://tinyurl.com/3br9o6n. Then you could just use someone else's definition - there DONE!
But that would be cheating -- right? It is not the artifact - the list of done criteria, that is important for your team - it is the act of doing it for themselves, it is that shared understanding of having a debate over some of the gray areas that create a true working agreement. If some of the team believes that a story being done means that there can be no bugs found in the code - but some believe that there can be some minor issues - well, then you have a great point to have a team discussion. Better at the beginning of the project, rather than right before the boss says 'ship it'. If you are having this dialogue (more than a debate/discussion - everyone is explaining their assumptions and exposing their values underlying their position in dialogue) then your team has entered the 2nd stage of team formation (Forming, Storming, Norming, Preforming) - congratulations! Now there is the second reason to create a definition of done - it moves the team along the continuum of strangers to team-mates.
|One team's Definition of Done. |
Note the items on the border between
Now and Next - tacit information.
If you want some cheater index cards then use mine - they are no better than anyone else's answer to a team question, but these might get a reluctant team up and interacting in the game of collaboration.
Definition of Ready Description.pdf *NEW!*
Definition of Ready Exercise Cards.pdf
Definition of Done Exercise Cards.pdf
-- by David Koontz
Not obvious in the example above is that the team used the items in the Next category to affinity group them by type, this was a spontaneous behavior of one of the team members. It was a natural thing to do with visible information - it organized the display - and then we dot-voted to decide which items were the most important to work toward moving into the Now category of the Definition of Done. Those items were then moved to the top area and circled to draw attention to them. Then they worked on their understanding of the Definition of Ready - what do they believe the story must have to be ready for sprint planning.
Comparing these two charts - what would you say about this team's ability to plan? What team member needs help?
What is the Definition of Done in Agile? by SolutionsIQ. A great overview of the purpose and need of the DoD
An AgileGames 2013 Winner: Designing a Definition of DONE & READY
Jeff Sutherland's blog: Ready: The Dynamic Model of Scrum
What is the Definition of Done in Agile? - by Dhaval Panchal
George Dinwiddie's Definiton of Ready blog and InfoQ video Three Amigos (Business, Programmers, and Testers)
What are the Principles?
What do we do to truly support those 12 Agile Principles? We mapped our engineering practices to see if we were Agile.