Approaches

Tito’s Trello approach for remote collaboration

  • In a shared Trello board, which everyone accesses individually on laptops, two columns:
    • “Top successes”
    • “Something I wish I was getting”
  • Everyone is allowed to add 2 cards (no more) to each column - this number can be tweaked according to number of participants
  • People should add their faces to their own cards
    • (top tip! hover over a card and press spacebar to add your face)
  • Everyone has as many votes as they like
    • Vote by adding your face to the card
    • For successes, vote for what you’d like to hear more about
    • For wish lists, vote for what you have something to contribute on
  • Order the cards in the order of those with the most votes
  • Discuss cards
    • Alternate between successes and wish list items
    • Start at the top (ie those with most votes)
    • Keep going until you are out of time
    • You can set a time limit for each card if you like

Storyboard Retro

  • Outcome of a “storyboard” retro format (PRIVATE): 2018-02-09_Retro-storyboard.JPG here: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1Jbbb7dMx1OWGrB3cWOeTcCSKlUHV4Vnj
  • The way this worked was that people in groups drew pictures representing what their desired future would look like at the end of the next sprint, and then played them back to the wider group.

Retrospectives Antipatterns

From Retrospectives Antipatterns, by Aino Corry.

Five Phases of a Retrospective

  1. Set the stage
    • Create an atmosphere of trust
    • Make sure everyone’s voice is heard
    • Look at previous experiments / commitments / outcomes
    • Define a theme
  2. Gather data
    • what happened in the previous period?
    • how are things going?
  3. Generate insights
    • Look behind the gathered data to find the stories and the causes behind them
    • Can be free discussion or cause analysis
  4. Decide what to do
    • What experiments can be carried out to make improvements?
  5. Close the retrospective
    • who’s responsible for following up on experiments?
    • summarise what’s happened
    • evaluate the retro - a retro on a retro!

Wheel of fortune

  • Problem:
    • Jump to conclusions
    • Solve symptoms instead of problems
    • Use Start Stop Continue and act according to the labels on the columns
    • But this often just describes symtpoms of bigger problems
  • solution:
    • don’t just go from symptoms to solutions
    • look at causes behind problems
    • make sure you have a generate insights phase:
      • Fishbone
        • cause-analysis
        • also called Ishikawa diagram analysis
        • the problem is the head of the fish
        • the bones / ribs are themes - eg People, Process, Economy, Technology
        • ask for post-its to represent the different types of cause. Maybe they’ll cluster in a particular area
      • 5 Hows
        • (How instead of why, because why encourages people to find a single cause and do blaming)
        • basically root-cause analysis
        • keep asking “how did this happen?”
        • each answer forms the basis of the next question - as in, how did THAT happen?
        • there is probably more than one root cause, so you might want to repeat the exercise, asking a different sequence of questions each time
      • Ask for the story behind the postit, to learn what led to the problem

Dialling up the good

  • Don’t slip over the “what went well” section of the retro!
  • Liz Keogh had some good ideas for how to “dial up the good” in her podcast interview with Randy Silver:
    • When you note things that are going well in retros, you should have actions resulting!
    • For instance:
    • Amplify what’s already working well:
      • Have a team charter
      • Ways of working wiki page for onboarding
      • Do a brown bag or find other ways to share with other teams