Iterative Planning

How do you decide which tasks are most important? Given our experiences and cultural backgrounds, we may not be able to answer that fully for you. That said, if we were planning our own weddings all over again, here’s the way we’d infuse a Scrum Your Wedding strategy into our prioritizing. It’s rooted in Agile development philosophy, and it might strike you as counter-intuitive at first. Are you ready? Here it is:

Write your vows first.

If you find that surprising, you’re not alone. Many couples who write their own vows (ahem, ourselves included) write them very late in the game, sometimes even the day of the wedding. Maybe they put it off because it seems hard (classic procrastination). Or maybe they do it last because it’s easy (better to do the hard stuff first).

Here’s why we suggest writing your vows first: If you write your vows today, you can get married tomorrow.

Think about it: It may not be the wedding of your dreams, but you and your partner can get married tomorrow (well, technically, you need a marriage license, too).

Remember what we said at the beginning of this Guide about Scrum being an iterative process? This is where that comes into play. In software, there’s a concept called the “Minimum Viable Product” or MVP. This is the smallest possible version of the product that can technically still be called the product.

You need to identify your Minimum Viable Wedding—it might be you, your partner, a justice of the peace, and some heartfelt words scrawled on a piece of notebook paper.

Of course, we’re not suggesting you stop there! You want to build up around the Minimum Viable Wedding.

Here’s what we mean:

Imagine a circle that represents your Minimum Viable Wedding. Let’s say it includes your vows, your rings, your marriage license, and an officiant. Your list should be your own and should represent your absolute minimum requirements for getting married.

Now, imagine a “version 2” (or v2) for your wedding. For most people who are planning a wedding, the v2 will include guests! And with guests come a few more requirements: invitations, a venue big enough to accommodate everyone, and perhaps food and drink to sustain everyone.

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For v3 you might expand your list of requirements to include special clothes, a wedding party, music, a photographer.

v4 might include things that feel less essential to you—flowers, a guest book, DIY party favors—and so on.

We recommend planning your wedding in this way so that, from very early on, you can actually imagine the wedding happening, and feel good about it. Each “version” represents another step toward your dream scenario, but you’ll adjust your vision every step of the way as you gain new information.