The Chicken and the Pig

There is a story in Scrum about a chicken and a pig.

One day the chicken decides that the two should start a restaurant.

The pig is intrigued by the idea and says, “That sounds great. I’m an entrepreneurial type of hog. I’m sick of working for the farmer. But what are we going to call the restaurant?”

The chicken thinks. Then she scratches and pecks at the dirt and suggests, “Ham and Eggs!”

To which the pig replies, “No thanks, I’d be committed. You’d only be involved.”

The Difference Between Commitment and Involvement

This story is told in Scrum circles to point out the difference between commitment and involvement.

The original idea was that the development team members and Scrum Master were committed, but the product owner was merely involved. It was used to claim that the product owner should not participate (or even attend) the daily scrum.

I’ve never been fond of that way of thinking. It sets up an unnecessary divide between team and product owner. Further, who can be more committed to the success of a project than the product owner, who is sometimes called the “single wringable neck” in Scrum literature?