What I have quickly found is that it’s really hard to protect developer’s time on Blue Sky Days. We had two issues which I would have usually rushed through, but this is the first time I had awarded Blue Sky days to the team. It would have completely undermined the concept if I’d asked them to do this work. I made a pragmatic decision to hold back the work but it was difficult not to interrupt their day.

I ensured that the team understood that they had the time to investigate new development work or any technology that interested them. In my absence a developer was approached with a serious pricing issue – I was glad to hear on my return this had been dealt with in a timely manner. I was also gladdened that the principles of self-organising had shone through. It does show however that the Scrum Leader has to be ever vigilant to protect developer’s time if the concept of Blue Sky Days is to have validity.

The pot of gold is somewhat elusive but if we allow teams the chance to explore, they might just find one.

Are Blue Sky Days worth their weight in gold?

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