I became Certified Scrum Master (CSM) on 2010. I took a CSM course at beautiful Oporto. My instructor was Mitch Lacey (https://www.mitchlacey.com/). Amazing instructor. If you can attend any of his courses, go ahead. On 2012, he published an amazing book about Scrum, I totally recommend, “The Scrum Field Guide: Practical Advice for Your First Year” (http://www.amazon.com/Scrum-Field-Guide-Addison-Wesley-Signature/dp/0133853624). So practical, so full of examples to understand how to properly apply Scrum and get most of it.
During the CSM training session, when talking about INVEST (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/INVEST_(mnemonic)) in your product backlog, value of User Stories and priorities he said, “the first question to ask yourself about a user story, task or process is what happens if we just don’t do it?”. Everyone laughed. Not doing something useless you were supposed to do, it’s a high productive activity.
The more I meet teams, project managers, developers, sysops, etc., the stronger my feeling is that we always try to improve things adding stuff not removing waste. More process, more abstraction, more code, more tools. My recommendation is that the best way to speed teams up is to remove useless or low value things. Let’s see some suggestions.