Getting Started With Scrum in Nonprofits

It all started more than a few years ago with a family vacation with a LONG car ride from the 1000 Islands in far far upstate New York to North Carolina looming over us. My spouse and I were debating about what audio book to download for the trip and we settled on Scrum: The Art of Doing Twice the Work in Half the Time by Dr. Jeff Sutherland.


The book appealed to my spouse as a systems engineering manager in an international firm and it spoke to my business owner and Type-A tendencies as well. Just reading the title on made me start to wonder if I could I get more done in the office without working longer hours or sacrificing the time I treasured with my small children?


Fast forward five years, and I have gone on to become a Certified Scrum Master and Certified Product Owner through Scrum Alliance via the trainings offered through Scrum, Inc. My firm, DH Leonard Consulting & Grant Writing Services operates using the Scrum framework, my daughter’s First Lego League team that I co-coach, the Heritage Hi-Techs use the Scrum framework, and one whole wall in our workout area of the house has the family scrum board. Not to mention that my spouse, Erich Leonard, has gone on to make Agile practices and the Scrum framework his career focus as he has grown further in his leadership roles at work. Both professionally and personally, we are hooked. We have watched the client success rate and satisfaction for clients increase, we have watched the First Lego League team earn a bid to the World Championship event, and we have watched our family goals get achieved faster than we thought were possible.


When I speak at conferences like the Grant Professionals Association or on webinars like with Foundant Technologies (Check out the recording of that free webinar here) about the Scrum framework and how it can be used in grant team settings, grant consulting firms, and broadly in nonprofits, the most common question I get is, “So where do I start?” This is a loaded question as it depends on your goals for what you are trying to achieve and why Scrum has grabbed your interest.


To help you get started with Scrum in your nonprofit setting (or actually, in *any* setting including other consulting firm, families, or team environments), I’ve created a getting started checklist.


Download the free checklist today to help you get started.


After you have reviewed the checklist and started with the first activities, we are here at any point to help answer questions, provide training, and support you on your Agile journey.


Interested in professional development? Our team offers trainings every month! These include 2-hour webinars, half, full, and multi-day sessions, along with a handful of on-demand webinars. We also offer full credential courses including Scrum Master and Product Owner. 

Need a custom training for your organization to introduce Scrum or help credential your whole team? We offer private trainings as well. Learn more about the professional development we offer here.