No matter how closely all you ScrumMasters out there follow my #AskArtisan videos, you’re going to have unexpected interruptions that come about. I’m talking about defects – Hopefully, most of your defects are Planned Defects, which are defects that the Scrum Team knows about and are in the Product Backlog and Sprint Goal to be fixed. But, you’re bound to have some Unplanned Defects from time to time, which are critical and must be addressed immediately. Unplanned Defects are much more challenging to deal with.

When you come up against an Unplanned Defect, you as a ScrumMaster, or Product Owner (CSPO), or Scrum Team have to ask yourselves tough questions. Is this defect important enough to interrupt the team? Is it so critical that our team needs to sacrifice the Sprint Goal for it? These questions have expensive answers sometimes! If the Unplanned Defect can wait, send it to the Product Backlog and deal with it in the next Sprint Planning.

However, if it’s truly critical, and there’s no way that it can wait until you finish your Sprint, you don’t have much of a choice other than to deal with it immediately. At that point, all you can do is bring the defect to the team and attack it by figuring out what’s it going to take to get it done. Put the people on it that are needed to resolve it as quickly as possible, and the rest of the team should do the best they can to keep the Sprint moving. Don’t give up on the Sprint Goal, keep working towards it. You might not make it, but that happens and isn’t the end of the world.

Be sure to check out more of our #AskArtisan video series!