Some ideas that seem perfectly sensible are really disasters waiting to happen, and agile teams are not immune. I’ve started to notice some frequent mistakes that inexperienced, and sometimes not so inexperienced, teams make when they’re trying to be agile. These things seem like perfectly good, common sense ideas, but they have undesirable consequences, and we’re going to see what those consequences are.

We’re going to talk today about the product backlog. For those unfamiliar, the backlog is the list of functions or features that the product owner or business want in the eventual product. On a Scrum project, these are usually user stories, a sentence in what I call “Cohn Normal Form” is:

I as type of user, want to perform some function so I can receive some benefit.

For instance: “I, as a customer of the bank, want to withdraw money from the ATM, so I can buy a cup of coffee.”

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