Putting the Moose on the Table: Make your retrospectives more effective using LEGO SERIOUS PLAY techniques

In order for teams to step into high performance. it's critical that they develop the practice of having effective conversations about what is and isn't working.  Yet in practice, the retrospective meeting is often the least-valued of the agile events: team members feel that their retros are boring, repetitive, and superficial.  

In this workshop, we will teach participants how to design and deliver a really useful retrospective using LEGO SERIOUS PLAY.  We'll cover the basics of this powerful facilitation technique, and give advice about how to build your own SERIOUS PLAY kit using pieces easily available at the local toy store.  We'll also offer practical suggestions for how to design a retro that gets everyone talking (and building), and results in the team agreeing on action.

The participants will leave with a powerful retrospective technique that they can immediately use with their teams.


Outline/Structure of the Workshop

(This is still a work in progress - we'd love feedback on how to make this better!)

Why aren't your retros working?

Quick review: the 5 stages of a retrospective

So you think you can LEGO Serious Play?: a quick and dirty overview of the essentials of this facilitation technique

Warm up activities to get everyone talking

Getting the moose on the table: choosing questions to get to the heart of things.

Building your own LSP kit: what you need to know to build a facilitation kit using LEGO that's readily available at your local toy shop.



Learning Outcome

Participants in this workshop will learn:

  • How to plan a retrospective that includes each of the 5 steps needed to foster effective conversations
  • Warm up activities to encourage full participation
  • The foundations of LEGO SERIOUS PLAY (enough to be able to run an exercise with their teams)
  • Retrospective questions to stimulate powerful conversation about deeper issues
  • How to put together a basic kit for LEGO Serious Play

Target Audience

Scrum Masters, Agile Team Leads, Organizational Change Agents



schedule Submitted 6 years ago

  • Yuval Yeret

    Yuval Yeret - Spark engagement and participation in a SAFe Scaled Agile Implementation using Online Games

    180 Mins

    People keep saying SAFe is a very prescriptive methodology with zero room for engagement and participation. In this session we will uncover the many opportunities for participation/games in a Scaled Agile implementation. We will also share Kahoot - a useful game platform I've been using in recent years to quickly drive participation with large groups. 

    Kahoot is an awesome online Quiz/Discussion/Survey tool that is free and easy to both setup and use. We will use Kahoot to learn and experience a couple of the key activities in a Scaled Agile implementation - Planning an implementation, Generating Buy-in, Prioritizing Features, Estimating Features, Gauging confidence for plans, Managing risks, Retrospecting a session and more. 

    Using the SAFe/Scaled Agile context we will experience both a couple of ready games as well as the full cycle of game thinking/design from identifying need/purpose all the way thru creating an outline, the questions, and running and debriefing so you can use it on your own. 

    Along the way you will also learn and experience some aspects of SAFe(tm) - The Scaled Agile Framework. 


  • Mike Bowler

    Mike Bowler - Agile Technical Practices in LEGO®

    90 Mins

     In this interactive and engaging workshop, you will learn the concepts behind, and the value of, several Agile Engineering Practices. Without requiring programming or other technical knowledge, these concepts can be explained through the use of play and understanding the importance of failure in individual and team growth.

    You will be given several challenges to complete in LEGO bricks and through this, and the subsequent debrief, you will learn about the agile technical practices.

    We'll cover simplicity, TDD, refactoring, technical debt, and continuous integration.

  • Andrea Chiou
    Andrea Chiou
    Agile Coach
    schedule 6 years ago
    Sold Out!
    90 Mins

    FeatureBan is a simple and quick simulation that introduces several of the key concepts of Kanban, including visualization, feedback loops and limiting work in process and that lets participants learn by doing.  The simulation is also useful because it lets organizations who are curious about Kanban quickly learn about it before investing further.  Mike Burrows invented the simulation, but in this session I will present a modified version that I have used with both technical and non-technical audiences.

  • Yuval Yeret

    Yuval Yeret - Using a Kahoot Online Survey/Quiz as a facilitation technique to spark engagement and open the space

    90 Mins

    In recent years I've been using Kahoot and other similar techniques to help me facilitate agile workshops and sessions all the way from the team level to the enterprise scale (and even conference talks). 

    Kahoot is an awesome online Quiz/Discussion/Survey tool that is free and easy to both setup and use. I use it to assess knowledge in order to focus learning, assess level of maturity in order to focus coaching, as a fun quiz to generate some laughs, an estimation game, as a safe way to gauge confidence level in plans drafted in a workshop as well as to run audience surveys during conference keynotes or as a quiz that drives a learning session. 

    In this workshop we will experience the whole game design/use cycle - from identifying the need/purpose all the way through game design to actually experiencing play.

    We will review the thinking behind some of the games I designed and use on an ongoing basis.

    Then you will work in teams to create and experience your own games addressing your own needs. 


  • 180 Mins

    Want your team to really learn Agile? Have them teach it back to themselves. Here’s their assignment:
    "Design, implement, and deliver courseware that teaches you everything you need to know about Agile."
    Guide your team one step at a time through the complete Agile product development lifespan, from team formation all the through product delivery and team retrospective. Your team members leave your session with:

    • a demonstrated high level of Agile proficiency—they delivered an actual product,
    • high internalized knowledge of Agile—they taught the subject matter to their teammates, and
    • an important artifact—a team-specific guide to everything they need to know about Agile
  • Andrea

    Andrea / Christophe THIBAUT - Personal Alignment Express

    90 Mins

    What do you really, really want? This workshop introduces to you to the Core Protocol of Personal Alignment - and how it supports team members to know themselves and each other well so that they can work towards what they each want. This workshop requires that you come prepared for self-exploration and for practicing open, non intrusive questions when asking others about their alignment. We’ll teach you the steps, and support you along the way. There will be time for debrief and questions at the end and learning a bit about how this protocol relates to the rest of the protocols.

    You’ll leave with a copy of the book on Core Protocols by Richard Kasperowski. Before you come to this session, think about: what are some things that are blocking you from getting what you want in your professional or personal development! That’s all you’ll need, and we’ll support you to discover a way forward!

    Pair this workshop with Joshua Grob's workshop entitled: Engagement Starts with You!