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Techniques for an Effective Retrospective by Mind Map: Techniques for an Effective
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Techniques for an Effective Retrospective

Close the Retrospective

Reflect on the retrospective and how to improve it

Appreciate accomplishments

The team

Individual interactions

Creative ideas

Stop leaving the retro with a bad taste in everyone's mouth!

Retrospective Definition

Meeting held by the team to reflect on their process, positives and the improvements, to make actionable commitments for improvement

"Without pursuing improvement as retrospectives require, true agility is simply not achievable"

Entire Team

Development Team, Scrum Master, Product Owner

Prime Directive

‘Regardless of what we discover, we understand and truly believe that everyone did the best job he or she could, given what was known at the time, his or her skills and abilities, the resources available, and the situation at hand.’

- Norm Kerth

Set the Stage

get the team ready to engage

This last sprint we accomplished 'X' over 2 weeks. We had 3 story peer reviews all at the end. You guys dealt with some big pager calls and helped add stories to prevent future calls

Now we want to reflect on our successes and what we want to work on moving forward.

But first....

warm up activity(ies)

energizers, invigorate participants and make them feel more engaged

Untangle yourselves, everyone grabs each others hands and untangles

Visual Telephone, Write a sentence, pass to right, draw picture, pass to right, write sentence of the picture

Move around the room

This is the time for team building activities

Gather Data

create a shared picture of

what happened during the sprint

where the team feels they are on overall goals and success

Happiness radar

given context have each member rate their happiness level

Peaks and Valleys Timeline

Each team member draws happy/unhappy timeline over the last itteration

Pillars of Agile Spiderweb

Big Hitter Moments

Acknowledge and reflect the good parts

Generate Insights

Brainstorming to identify areas of improvement for the team

Continuing to do what is successful

Changing current processes for more valuable outcomes

Add processes or techniques to lead to effective change accomplishing team and project goals

Tell and Cluster


Start, Stop, Do More, Do Less, and Keep

Lots of Variations

Small Starfish, Keep, More Of, Less Of / Stop

4Ls - liked, learned, lacked, longed for

KALM - Keep, Add, More, Less

PMI - Plus, Minus, Interesting

Open The Box, Remove from box, add to box, recycle in box

Thumbs up, down, new ideas and recognition

Speed Car - Abyss

4 categories to writes notes about, Car Engine, What has been pushing us forward, making us fast, Car Parachute, What has been slowing us down, Abyss, What are the dangers ahead, What could take us down this path, Bridge, What could we build to overcome the abyss

Car engine, Car Parachute, Abyss, Bridge

6 thinking hats

Decide what to do

identify highest priority items to work on

identify actionable items the team will accomplish

Dot Voting

Everyone gets (X) votes and puts a dot on each item, top 1 or 2 items will be the focus of the action items


5 min writing ideas, pass ideas to the left, 5 minutes adding to those ideas, repeat

Speed Dating

Put measurable goals on those items so they can be completed

How do we know we are doing it right, or successfully?


Never accept "just do it from now on"

This Mind Map

Back Side of Handout


Rotate facilitator role

Get someone outside the team to facilitate

Achievable actions and owners for each action

Start each retro by reviewing the actions from previous retro

Mix up locations

Use a room without a table

Throw away everything from retro except acions

focus on outcomes, not problems