A few weeks back I asked this question on a very popular Agile and Lean LinkedIn Group:
10 years ago not many companies delivered value every month and Scrum really helped the industry with the concept of sprint. People started thinking in terms of vertical slices of value rather than systems and started to deliver value often, it was a great step forward towards agility.
Today most shops do 2 weeks sprints and it is commonly accepted that smaller batches are better than larger ones as they are less risky and also allow for earlier benefit realisation.
I understand how the concept of sprint has helped the industry become more agile and lean, but, and there is a but.
Why have sprints today? Why create artificial deadlines? Why create a minimum batch size, be it one week, two weeks or whatever it is?
If I am a mature organisation, I probably have cut delivery transaction costs and have a good strategy for continuous delivery and I am able to release whenever I want with little effort and risk. Why can’t I release when I have value to deliver?
Can anybody give me a valid reason for having sprints?
The topic became popular with a total of 35 thumbs up and 85 comments (including my replies)
Reading the answers, I am not only more and more convinced that sprints are unnecessary and dangerous artificial deadlines, but I am starting to think that in some agile practitioners thinking, the scrum guide has replaced the true reasons for agility.
If you have better reasons why we should always sprint, please add them as a comment, I am still hopeful I have missed something and want to learn.