schedule Oct 15th 04:15 - 05:00 PM place Ballroom A people 23 Interested

Have you sat through a retrospective that feels like Deja vu? Didn’t we already come up with a plan to fix this thing we are talking about, AGAIN! Are you in yet another blame/complain session with no apparent way to fix the complaint? Time and again this happens in retrospectives and before you know it, the team thinks they should cancel them altogether because they aren’t effective. Fortunately, there are clear steps you can take to fix this and make your retrospectives highly effective.

In this session we will cover the common patterns that typically lead to ineffective retrospectives. The downsides to the team when retrospectives are ineffective. Then I will give you a very effective format to follow along with some different techniques to help get your retrospectives to be very effective.

 
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Outline/Structure of the Workshop

  • Introduction (2 mins)
  • Common signs or reasons retrospectives are ineffective (10 mins)
    • Finger pointing retro
    • Half the group on devices retro
    • One loud voice retro
    • Boring, drone retro
    • Marathon retro
  • Provide downsides of ineffective retrospectives
  • Provide effective format for each retrospective regardless of technique
  • Demonstrate how to effectively start off a retrospective
  • Provide retrospective techniques
  • Table top exercise to identify which retro technique to use based on current team dynamics
  • Wrap up

Learning Outcome

  • Participants will be able to identify common patterns that make retrospectives ineffective via familiar examples
  • Participants will understand the downsides to ineffective retrospectives via material presented
  • Participants will gain skill to make retrospectives more effective via table-top demonstrations and material presented by speaker

Target Audience

Scrum Masters, Developers, Product Owners, Project Managers, Program Managers, Testers, Product Developers

Prerequisites for Attendees

No prerequisites

schedule Submitted 1 year ago

Public Feedback

comment Suggest improvements to the Speaker
  • George Dinwiddie
    By George Dinwiddie  ~  1 year ago
    reply Reply

    Brian,

    I'm surprised not to see "Not actually looking at data/observations of the past together" in your list of common reasons retrospectives are ineffective. Yet in your blog post, I see you mention Esther & Diana's book. Your "Go To Retrospective Format" also skips this step.

    Please give us some more detail on the contents of this talk.

    The outline/structure is the place where you sell your session to the reviewers. Help them recognize that you'll deliver on your abstract. Give them details about the content and the way that you'll present it to convince them that you'll do a good job.

    See also https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1028714041349263360.html for an independent description of submitting a successful proposal.

    - George, AgileDC Program Chair

    • Brian Sjoberg
      By Brian Sjoberg  ~  11 months ago
      reply Reply

      Hey George,

       

      Sorry for the delayed response. I just got back from vacation today. I will provide you a response by this evening, if not sooner.

       

      Thank you for your time reviewing my proposal and feedback.

       

      VR

      Brian

       

      From: AgileDC 2018 <info@confengine.com>
      Sent: Saturday, August 18, 2018 21:35
      To: Brian Sjoberg <brian.sjoberg@excella.com>
      Subject: New comment posted on What Has Caused Your Retrospectives to Suck and What to do About it

       

      Dear Brian Sjoberg,

      Please note that the proposal: What Has Caused Your Retrospectives to Suck and What to do About it has received a new comment from George Dinwiddie

      Brian,

      I'm surprised not to see "Not actually looking at data/observations of the past together" in your list of common reasons retrospectives are ineffective. Yet in your blog post, I see you mention Esther & Diana's book. Your "Go To Retrospective Format" also skips this step.

      Please give us some more detail on the contents of this talk.

      The outline/structure is the place where you sell your session to the reviewers. Help them recognize that you'll deliver on your abstract. Give them details about the content and the way that you'll present it to convince them that you'll do a good job.

      See also https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1028714041349263360.html for an independent description of submitting a successful proposal.

      - George, AgileDC Program Chair


      Visit https://confengine.com/agiledc-2018/proposal/7587#comments to respond to the comment OR simply reply to this email (Please make sure, you delete the previous comment's content from the email before replying.)

      Regards,
      AgileDC 2018 Team
      comment-9690@reply.confengine.com

      You have received this important update from ConfEngine on behalf of AgileDC 2018.
      Download ConfEngine's Mobile App to totally personalise your conference experience.
      If you are 100% sure, that this email was sent to you by mistake, please click here to un-subscribe from all future email updates from ConfEngine.

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    • Brian Sjoberg
      By Brian Sjoberg  ~  11 months ago
      reply Reply

      Hey George,

       

      Holy crap, great catch. I can’t believe I have forgotten that in the blog post and proposal because it is absolutely what I coach Scrum Masters to do. I almost always have them put in some time at the beginning of the retro to reflect on the previous retros improvement plan. Here we look at the measurable goal of the improvement and see whether the team succeeded. Sometimes these improvement plans can take longer than one iteration to have enough data to see the impact from the plan. In this case, we may check in to do an intermittent reflection but wouldn’t determine success or failure until the time box of the improvement plan is over. For example if the timebox was 4 sprints.

       

      In addition to the reflection of the past improvement plans I definitely have collected data/observations, had the team generate data throughout a sprint or release, and then present/display that during the beginning of the retro before the generating insights portion. I coach this as well. Some common data to present would be defect rate, commitment percentage (i.e. number of stories that team committed to delivering to done vs. number of stories that were delivered and meeting definition of done and acceptance criteria), velocity, user satisfaction, value stream map, cycle time, lead time, time spent fixing bugs, test code coverage.

       

      I updated my blog post to reflect this.

       

      http://anagilemind.net/2017/11/21/my-go-to-retrospective-format/

       

      Regarding more contents of the talk, I have added some more details to the outline to give a better picture of what I intend to present.

       

      Outline/Structure

      • Introduction
      • Common signs or reasons retrospectives are ineffective
        • Finger pointing retro
        • Half the group on devices retro
        • One loud voice retro
        • Boring, drone retro
        • Not looking at data retro
        • Marathon retro
      • Provide downsides of ineffective retrospectives
      • Provide effective format for each retrospective regardless of technique
        • Follow the Diverge and Converge picture and lay the format over the picture
        • Use Agile Retrospectives book format with a tweak
          • Set the stage
          • Team member check in
          • Reflect on previous improvement plan
          • Gather data
          • Generate insights
          • Decide What to Do
          • Close Out
      • Demonstrate how to effectively start off a retrospective
        • Describe a quick check in and the value it provides. It gives permission for everyone to speak. It should be very simple and not analyzing what people say. Facilitator says thank you for sharing, no judgment.
        • Have the each table do a quick check in
      • Provide retrospective techniques and when to use
        • Time line
        • Mad, Sad, Glad or Proud, Sorries
        • Pluses, Delta
        • Team Health Check
        • Speedboat
        • 5 Whys
      • Table top exercise to identify which retro technique to use based on current team dynamics
        • Provide 3-5 different scenarios for the group to identify a retrospective technique to use and their reasons
          • Team has been together for a long time and their throughput/velocity has flatlined
          • Team just went through a 4 iteration release and had significant issues with some 3rd party dependencies
          • Team is just forming and has had their first iteration and didn't complete any stories
          • Teams production defect count is on the rise the last few iterations
      • Wrap up
        • Why retros become ineffective and signs they are
        • Retro techniques
        • Good format to use for any retro and highlight the need to check in with previous improvement plans

       

      Let me know if you want further clarification or have questions.

       

      Thank you for your time. I look forward to hearing from you.


      Sincerely,

       

      Brian

       

       

      From: AgileDC 2018 <info@confengine.com>
      Sent: Saturday, August 18, 2018 21:35
      To: Brian Sjoberg <brian.sjoberg@excella.com>
      Subject: New comment posted on What Has Caused Your Retrospectives to Suck and What to do About it

       

      Dear Brian Sjoberg,

      Please note that the proposal: What Has Caused Your Retrospectives to Suck and What to do About it has received a new comment from George Dinwiddie

      Brian,

      I'm surprised not to see "Not actually looking at data/observations of the past together" in your list of common reasons retrospectives are ineffective. Yet in your blog post, I see you mention Esther & Diana's book. Your "Go To Retrospective Format" also skips this step.

      Please give us some more detail on the contents of this talk.

      The outline/structure is the place where you sell your session to the reviewers. Help them recognize that you'll deliver on your abstract. Give them details about the content and the way that you'll present it to convince them that you'll do a good job.

      See also https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1028714041349263360.html for an independent description of submitting a successful proposal.

      - George, AgileDC Program Chair


      Visit https://confengine.com/agiledc-2018/proposal/7587#comments to respond to the comment OR simply reply to this email (Please make sure, you delete the previous comment's content from the email before replying.)

      Regards,
      AgileDC 2018 Team
      comment-9690@reply.confengine.com

      You have received this important update from ConfEngine on behalf of AgileDC 2018.
      Download
      ConfEngine's Mobile App to totally personalise your conference experience.
      If you are 100% sure, that this email was sent to you by mistake, please
      click here to un-subscribe from all future email updates from ConfEngine.

      --_000_SN6PR08MB50869278750682590153F025F3360SN6PR08MB5086namp_--

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