How Black Stories revive Scrum meetings

Black Stories are ‘scary’ riddles where someone died in a mysterious manner and the players have to find out what happened by asking the right questions. The most obvious reason is never the solution, so the players will have to use lateral thinking to get to the answer.

As a summer camp coach Jordann played a lot of Black Stories with kids. He soon began to see patterns in their thinking and acting. The kids which joined the Black Stories multiple times, were often the ones who got better at thinking out of the box. They started asking ‘out of context’ questions which would often get the group a step closer to the solution.

He figured since these mental mechanisms work on kids, they would surely work on grown-ups! So as a Scrum master Jordann started using Black Stories to kick off meetings where creativity was crucial to get the best output (isn’t any meeting?), within Scrum mainly the refinement and the sprint planning.
The results were noticeable, even by the people themselves. :) It also had a nice side-effect: people looked forward to the meetings and everyone would be strict on time, both things which weren’t always the case before. Let Jordann help you put the fun in functional!

 
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Outline/structure of the Session

  • Intro
  • First game
  • Explanation
  • Second game
  • Round up

Learning Outcome

  • Creativity is a mindset
  • ‘Meetings’ can be a fun thing
  • Out of the box thinking can be trained

You'll walk away with some more knowledge about lateral thinking and a practical tool how to encourage that in your team(s).

Target Audience

Agile Coaches - Scrum Masters - Facilitators - Team leads - Servant leaders/managers

schedule Submitted 5 months ago

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