What is Mob Programming or Mobbing in Agile Scrum ?
As per Mob Programming – A Whole Team Approach, by Woody Zuill and Kevin Meadows, we can say Mobbing or Mob Programming as :
“All the brilliant people working on the same thing, at the same time, in the same space, on the same computer.”
It’s very much clear that Mob Programming or Mobbing in Agile Scrum is nothing but complete team efforts on a single task. When all the team members use same system, same keyboard to complete a task by inviting ideas of all the team members one by one we say it as Mobbing.
In short, In Agile scrum Mob Programming or Mobbing team uses single system and keyboard to complete a task by considering team ideas politely. Mobbing method takes consent from each team member on a solution approach. Politely One common solution agreement applies to the problem with proof of success.
What is the ideal size of Mob Programming in Agile Scrum ?
Ideal size of team in Mobbing or Mob Programming varies from 3 to 6. Ideally, more than 6 members are not recommended. Because it will be hard to manage the Mob Programming.
In fact, if number of members are more than 6 screen sharing, keyboard sharing and discussions are harder to manage. So maximum 6 members are recommended for Mobbing or Mob Programming.
Know different roles in Mobbing or Mob Programming
In Mobbing there are 2 roles – Driver & Navigator.
Navigator is the team member who drives the Driver politely and efficiently. Navigator gives the suggestions, ideas & solutions to Driver politely.
Driver role is to carry out the suggestions given by Navigator. Driver is not supposed to do anything from his side. In case, Driver wants to give suggestions he can request other team member to become Driver.
So, in Mobbing or Mob Programming team mates keep changing their roles based on their availability and interest. But without harming the team effort and environment.
In fact, roles in Mobbing is the way to bring the best team output for a task. You are not forced to be a Navigator and Driver for the whole session. Your can change your role based on the requirement politely after team’s consent.
For example, You are a navigator and want to drive the system and keyboard to implement your ideas. For this, Firstly you need to get common approval from all the team members for your ideas politely. Once everyone is agreed you can become Driver and work as per team agreed solution.
Pros of Mobbing in Agile Scrum
Mob Programming so called Mobbing increases the team efficiency. All the team members works on a single task on single system and single keyboard.
This helps team to focus more on the task. Due to proper synchronisation team achieves its goal easily, smoothly and faster.
In fact, when all the team members work on same goal. Team gets benefit of multiple ideas for a single task. Easy to get all the well proved ideas, design solution and logic in a single call.
It helps to save time of code review, designing discussions and individual efforts.
Cons of Mob Programming or Mobbing in Agile Scrum
As we have benefit of Mobbing, similarly we have cons also. Below mentioned points are also some cons of Mob Programming or Mobbing.
Since all the team members are working at the same time together more chaos happens. Team may get conflict of thoughts. If not managed well, it will lead in disputes of thoughts.
In case, team members are not efficient, then all in vain. We mean to say if team members are not logical and good in designing skills, then all the efforts will waste. It means, team will fail to deliver good results.
If you are not following polite way of working, it will turn into huge conflict and heated discussion.
If team members are more egocentric, Mob Programming in scrum may become inefficient. Because egocentric teammates may feel bad for not adopting their ideas. This will lead incompletion of task because of conflict.
How to plan Mobbing for you scrum team for good results ?
You might have learnt the pros and cons of Mob Programming. In case you did not Mobbing, your team may lead to continuous failure.
Firstly, make sure to use proper scrum communication tools. It is very important tool for Agile scrum. In case, your team works remotely please use some good online meeting tools like GoToMeeting, Microsoft team, WebEx or Zoom. These tools can help you to collaborate teams efficiently.
Secondly, If you are in office, find a better silent place where all the team members can seat. Connect Driver ‘s (Here programmer of Mobbing) system to projector so that all the team members can watch, cooperate and join comfortably.
Moreover, Always make sure Driver gets right information from Navigator politely. Always make a common consent on an idea without becoming egocentric. It is responsibility of each team member not to violet the teaming rules.
Likely please be kind to team members. Accept the others ideas politely. In case, you are not agreeing to someone’s idea, please do not loose your temper. Always welcome team mates ideas.
In case you are disagree with someone’s idea, politely you can suggest your idea. You can give a blueprint of your idea. With kind heart accept others ideas and suggest your ideas with proper explanations.
Some good references to read Mobbing or Mob Programming
Here are some good references you can follow to get more knowledge on Mob Programming.
- Mob Programming – A Whole Team Approach, by Woody Zuill and Kevin Meadows.
- Code with the Wisdom of the Crowd: Get Better Together with Mob Programming, by Mark Pearl
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