TL; DR: A Remote Retrospective with a Distributed Team
We started this series on remote agile with looking into practices and tools, followed by exploring virtual Liberating Structures, how to master Zoom as well as common remote agile anti-patterns. This fifth article now dives into organizing a remote Retrospective with a distributed team: practices, tools, and lessons learned.
What event could better embody Scrum’s principle of empiricism than the Sprint Retrospective? I assume all peers agree that even the simplest retrospective—if only held regularly—is far more useful than having a fancy one once in a while, not to mention having none at all. Moreover, there is always room for improvement. Hence, learn more about 21 common Sprint Retrospective anti-patterns.
TL;DR: Liberating Structures for Scrum: The Sprint Retrospective
Liberating Structures Sprint Retrospective: A few weeks ago, I started an event series with my Berlin-based Hands-on Agile Meetup group on how to improve Scrum events utilizing Liberating Structures — a set of easy to learn, yet powerful ways to collaborate as a team. The results have been fantastic so far, and I like to share these outcomes with those who cannot participate in person.
In this first post, learn more on how you can use Liberating Structures strings to improve the level of collaboration and engagement at Sprint Retrospectives.
The tenth Hands-on Agile webinar Sprint Retrospective anti-patterns covers twelve anti-patterns of the sprint retrospective—from #NoRetro to the dispensable buffer to UNSMART action items to a missing product owner.
The main message of the retrospective was clear: there are too many interruptions by stakeholders and senior management. The interruptions impeded the flow of work through the team. Consequently, achieving the sprint goal had been at risk several times in the past. Moreover, the team missed the sprint goal twice recently. Solving impediments as a team has become a necessity.
Learn more on how to tackle impediments as a team by running experiments and iterating on the solution.
A meta-retrospective is an excellent exercise to foster collaboration within the extended team, create a shared understanding of the big picture, and immediately create valuable action-items. It comprises of the team members of one or several product teams—or a representative from those—and stakeholders. Participants from the stakeholder side are people from the business as well as customers.
Meta-retrospectives are useful both as a regular event, say once a quarter, or after achieving a particular milestone, for example, a specific release of the product. Read more on how to organize such a meta-retrospective.
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