Everybody who ran through my training knows – I really like the idea of a Taskboard for Scrum-Teams. I even believe it is the best tool on the plannet to run a larger Scrum-Team on Product-Owner Level.

During the last couple of month I started to re-think the idea of Taskboards and one conclusion was that you do not decompose the tasks initially but only when you do the tasks.

And I observed ways to work with taskboards I would have never imagined. Why? Why is it so difficult for some teams to follow the simple rules how to work with taskboards? Maybe because there is a good and a bad aspect of taskboards.


  • It creates transparency. – Everybody knows where we are!
  • It enables collaboration, because we can work together on specific backlog items
  • The team can see what they are working on.


  • It forces everybody to think about what he can contribute
  • It shows clearly that I am not as fast as I thought
  • I have to talk in front of my peers about what I do
  • It can be seen by the team and everybody else as a strict reporting mechanism

Can you extend this list?

Avatar of Boris Gloger
„Mut“ ist jener Wert von Scrum, mit dem sich Boris Gloger am stärksten identifiziert. Er hat in seinem eigenen Leben keine Angst vor radikalen Entscheidungen und vor dem Glauben an eine Idee. Für kein Geld der Welt würde er sich Regeln unterwerfen, die keinen Sinn machen. Er glaubt an Scrum, weil es nicht nur bessere Produkte, sondern auch eine bessere und menschlichere Arbeitswelt schaffen kann.
  • http://marcospereira.wordpress.com Marcos Silva Pereira

    I can’t understand the first and third bad aspects. Why “forces everybody to think about what he can contribute” is a bad thing? Why “talk to in front of my peers about what I do” is a bad thing? I even think that the third point is present in daily scrum meeting.

    - The taskboard is a social thing
    - It is faster than a issue tracker
    - It is fun.

    - you can’t query/change it from everywhere.

    Kind Regards

  • Boris Gloger

    My post about what forces people not to use the task-board as it should be used. And a lot of people find really awkward ways of using the board.

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  • Roberto Simoni

    Like Marcos said, what’s the reason of I and III Bad?

  • Andreas Crauser

    After Boris’ excellent scrum master course and of course after trying taskboards from then on, I am convinced that it is the best way to organize a sprint.

    The bad thing is that you need a way to hold your backlog (you can also do that on a taskboard), but ideally I need a good tool where I can store my stories electronically and a way to comment on stories, etc.

    Thus, the bad thing on taskboards:
    - searching is weird
    - you cannot document solutions to stories

  • Thomas Lehmann

    You need not convince me but TEAM members might say:
    “Why can’t I do this also with an electronical tool?”

    a) We can sit together in front of one screen (daily scrum)
    SM: that’s not really optimal.
    TEAM: But we also can do meetings in another room
    with this.

    b) We can provide the information for whole company
    SM: you should not depend on certain software.
    The board is a readable visualization tool.
    The SM is responsible for visualization on
    company level.

    c) We provide the information once.
    SM: You have not two provide the information twice,
    the SM cares for. You have to use the taskboard only.

    d) We avoid paper.
    SM: The software requires also licenses and maintenance.

    e) We are faster.
    SM: You are arguing about minutes. When you can make 5 minutes
    out of two hours then I eventually will give up.

    Have you arguments which are more sufficent?