When Scrum is introduced to an organization, it injects the company culture with a few concepts—self-organization, transparent communication—that may be somewhat foreign. Another idea that Scrum introduces that can rattle traditional managers is consensus decision-making.
Because Scrum asks that teams self-organize, that means that they must decide among themselves how to accomplish sprint goals. Invariably, not everyone on the team will agree as to what the best route to success is. When that happens, the team must reach a decision that everyone can live with, working toward a compromise between the team’s most extreme perspectives.
Unlike authoritarian decision-making, this process can take time. Instead of a single manager dictating a decision, the team must take into account a wider range of ideas and opinions and negotiate a middle ground that best addresses the problem. By considering so many points of view, the team is essentially consulting a wider range of knowledge and experience than a single decision-maker possibly could. It’s a process that certainly takes longer, which has led to some criticizing consensus-based decision-making as inefficient. But in reality, this approach yields decisions that are better informed and, consequently, drive results.