Are we on the same page? Retrospecting the Retrospective

“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”
Thomas A. Edison

We have all experienced that ineffective or boring or respective retrospective that does nothing and goes nowhere, right? You often find yourself wishing the retrospective was cancelled. Here is the good news, let me show you how to make your team’s retrospective memorable event.

In this session, you will learn how to facilitate retrospective that are not only actionable but most importantly, loved by all. If you experience repetitive retrospective, this is the session to add more exciting and refreshing exercises/games to your tool bag.


Outline/Structure of the Workshop

0.00 - Introduction- Stand up survey - "How many people would rather have Retrospective cancelled?" "What do people think of Retrospective"?

The Participants shout out their response to the survey.

0.05 - Set the stage- One-word letter Check in

Table Discussion- The Participants, on their table, checks in using one- word to describe how they think of the conference

0.15- Retrospective from the trenches- Share with the attendees my experience of working with agile team. The struggles and accomplishments. This will be pictures, story and improvements the teams made, and which tools were used. (See the link for slides)

0.20 More retrospective exercises

Gather Data- Improv storytelling- Love and hate letter

Table Discussion- Participant are asked recite one hate letter and one love letter on their experience of retrospective

Generate Insights- Chaos Cocktail Party

Pairing- Participants will find someone to chat with about what they aim to get out retrospective and what can make the retrospective improve. They write done their ideas on a sticky

Decide what to do- Divide the Dollar

Table discussion- Participants discuss on the ideas they brought back to their table and then vote on the best 3 ideas. The are allowed "$5" to spend on any of the ideas.

0.70- Close Retrospective- Aha! ROTI

Stand up Survey/Shout out - What the ROTI was about the session

0.75- End of session

The session will follow the Diane Larsen and Esther Derby 5 stages of retrospective i.e. Set the stage, Gather Data, Generate Insights, decide what to do, Close Retrospective.

Participants can expect to learn and practice different retrospective exercises tailored towards, team building, collaboration, communication, feedback and decision making.

This presentation is not a 'death- by -PowerPoint session. It is a workshop format and exercise handouts given to participants. I have attached a sample of some of the exercise.

The Participants learn and practice different improv exercises tailored towards, team building, collaboration, communication, feedback and decision making

Learning Outcome

  • Attendees learn how retrospective helps the agile team to continuously improve
  • Facilitate the warm up exercise to help people focus and be present
  • Facilitate a team Heartbeat discussion to gather data
  • Facilitate Circle and soup to ascertain the team's circle of influence

Target Audience

scrum team, project manager, scrum master

Prerequisites for Attendees

agile, scrum


schedule Submitted 2 years ago

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