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Feb 27

How To Tweak Your Retrospective…

As I stated earlier, I decided to change the way I facilitate retrospectives. What did I change? What was the groundbreaking new style to employ or trick to use? After I tell you, you may probably think it is no rocket science. Or you may wonder why I did not tell you earlier. Anyway, it sure creates more honesty and transparency. So, here we go.

What I have seen in earlier retrospectives, is that coming up with tasks often does not really work. People tend to come up with tasks that are not actionable, tasks that they do not do themselves, or people do not follow through on tasks. I wrote about it here.

I decided, based on that very post, to switch styles and employ a different approach. So in the retrospective, after having defined a user story of the single big improvement we agreed on (Scrumming the Scrum) I invite everybody to…….

1) Only come up with tasks that they will sign up for themselves………….
2) And make an explicit commitment to do so…….. (e.g. walk up to the board and place a post-it with their name)
3) And….coming up with no tasks is fine. (If people do not want to do something about it, they will not do it anyway)

Is it working? I am not sure yet. But I like the transparency: “You want to make a change? Great! Write down your name and commit. You do not want to? No problem, great that we know upfront.” And please remember from my post about commitment: you will only get it if you have volunteers (1) who have passion (2) and responsibility (3) for the topic.

Want to know more or share your experience? Please let me know in the comments below or ping me on Twitter

Regards,

Rob


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