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KonMari Your Backlog: Tidying Up Those PBIs

Have you tidied your personal life with Marie Kondo and are wondering how to achieve the same effect at work? Are your most valuable product backlog items lost under a mountain of old stories? Watch to learn how to make your product better through the life-changing magic of tidying your backlog.

Excella’s Jennifer Forrest and Julie Wyman start by exploring the costs of a large, cluttered product backlog and share a short quiz you can use to gauge the current state of your own backlog. They take a deeper dive into why it’s important to explore the process of tidying. Next, they’ll cover how they have adapted the KonMari method and introduce five easy steps you can take to get started in your tidying process. Afterward, they share a few tips and considerations when choosing what backlog items to keep and how to go about discarding ones you’d like to let go of when decluttering. They share real-life examples along the way, calling out potential pitfalls to avoid, and illustrating how story mapping may be the magical backlog equivalent to Kondo’s “vertical folding” technique.

By the end of the session, you’ll know the specific next steps to take so that you, too, can realize the many benefits of a tidied-up product backlog: improved visibility, increased self-organization, and easier decision-making.

Joe Morrison, a Scrum Master at Excella, was so intrigued by his colleagues’ talk that he created a graphic recording while watching them present on their topic, “KonMari Your Backlog: Tidying Up Those PBIs.” In his graphic recording, he highlights questions they used to gauge the current state of a product backlog, their reasons behind why tidying up is important, and the five easy steps Jenn and Julie cover about getting started in the tidying process.

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