In the previous post, we discussed how to estimate when you may still need to estimate and multitask. Let’s find out how to do a detailed project plan, but that looks only a few weeks into the future. The post is based on a remarkable book written by Johanna Rothman, Manage It!
We all tried to plan the whole project at its beginning. The project team was stuck because such planning is a bottleneck. So instead of dealing with project obstacles (or just revealing them), our team is stuck and could not get into the rhythm of producing product features.
Rolling-Wave Planning idea is straightforward.
Do the detailed plan for one week. This is a continuous process, and as soon as you finish the first week, continue with the following one. Make a buffer of four weeks.
Johanna usually chooses four weeks’ planning because, for most of her’s clients, iteration is two weeks long.
Before rolling-wave planning, you need to know major project milestones. Put those milestones in front of the team and ask them to write into inch-pebbles (this is a task that could be done or not done and its duration is one or two days) what they need to do to achieve that milestone. Stop the session when the team has enough work for one week.
Role-Wave Planning is ideal to start the project. Later on, you can move to other techniques.