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PMP Q#10 – User Story Implementation

Q10. During the iteration, an agile team discovers that it is not feasible to implement one of the user story’s acceptance criteria.
What should the team do?

A. Leave this user story and work on others.
B. Discuss with the Product Owner to find alternatives
C. Put this user story back in the product backlog
D. Raise this in the upcoming retrospective meeting.

The correct answer is B

User stories are negotiable, which means you never baseline user story requirements. You can add or remove acceptance criteria even late in development. During iteration, there could be an ongoing conversation between the team, product owner, and other stakeholders –

  • For the challenges; the team is facing in developing user stories
  • For more clarification, the team needs user stories
  • To add or remove acceptance criteria to the user stories as new information uncovers.

So user stories are not a contract but are conversation starters instead. It implies flexibility and empowers the team to question the requirements even after work starts on those user stories. The product team should be able to revise the story as soon as new information uncovers. 

In summary –

  •  There is never late to talk about if something is going wrong in a given user story.
  •  It is never late to get some clarifications related to the user story. Iterative development is not about a silo approach or a baseline approach –

You never do that, where you get some baseline user stories at the beginning of the iteration, and now you do everything and only talk about these user stories at the end of the iteration.

Once you understand that collaboration can always happen, you should do something about it. Here in this question, B is the best option where the team is opening a discussion with the Product Owner to find out what team and business people can do best for this situation.

Let’s discuss why options A, C, and D are incorrect – 

Putting back into the product backlog and waiting for the retrospective meeting to happen is not a good idea. This approach undermines the whole collaboration, so the team should collaborate with the product owner and business stakeholders to discover the right thing to do in a given situation. Yes, the team can discuss this situation in a retrospective meeting if these happen frequently. But as of now, when the team discovers it, they should quickly discuss it for the earliest possible opportunity with the product owner.

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