User Stories | A New Perspective on What They Do

Today I tried to put a different light on User Stories. We all know that Mike came up with the very good way of phrasing a User Story:

As a <user role> I want <a feature> so that I can get <business value>.

When you analyse what Mike did than you can see that he tries to answer the three basic questions:

Who want What Why?

In the analysation of business problems Dan Roam showed us in “The Back of a Napkin,” that you can use these questions to come up with visual pictures.

First you Look to be able to See, to Imagine what you want to Show.

The job of the team in an Sprint Planning question is to ask these 3 questions again and again. Each Backlog Item needs to be analyzed till you have the answers to this three questions:

  1. Who
  2. what
  3. Why

User Stories create pictures that answers these questions.


One response to “User Stories | A New Perspective on What They Do

  1. Another good approach is to emphasizes the Business Value by putting the story motivation in evidence:

    “[…] The traditional format emphasizes the importance of the user, mentioning them first. The newly proposed variation switches the emphasis to the business value […]”

    This way of writing stories makes more evident when a story is not so important or there is no reason for it to exist.

    We have been using this format in my team at and we are having good results 🙂

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