Scrum Ball Point Game

You know when you’re having trouble keeping all your balls in the air? There’s a game for that!

The scrum ball point game is a very popular lean game in scrum/agile programming  circles, and it has nothing to do with pens.

The rules are simple. Like most lean games, it depends on breaking people’s preconceptions.

The goal of the scrum ball point game is to pass as many balls as possible through your entire team in two minutes. Actually, the goal is to introduce scrum, facilitate teamwork, adaptation and continuous improvement.

Scrum is a development method commonly used in software creation. It depends on a check and adjust cycle, an iterative process of the PDCA method Teams inspect their work and adjust accordingly. The concept of self-adjusting teams is what’s introduced in the scrum ball point game.

The rules:

1. You are one big team.

2. Balls must have air time.

3. No ball to your direct neighbour.

4. Start point = end point

5. Play 5 iterations of 2 minutes, with 1 minute in-between.

That’s it.

Boris Glogner, the creator of the scrum ball point game, maintains a blog with more information.

Download the full instructions below:
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Often times, people will start off in a two lines and will adapt with each iteration and end up moving closer, which improves each team’s flow. Just like other lean games, it’s important to have some sort of debriefing afterwards to explain to everyone the relevance or the game.

Here’s a video of a massive group playing the scrum ball point game. You can see the progression through the 5 iterations and improvement with each step.