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what_can_we_do_to_improve_our_retrospectives [2019/09/23 08:54]
Hans Samios Added team break
what_can_we_do_to_improve_our_retrospectives [2019/10/17 13:39] (current)
Hans Samios Added management and distributed teams
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 <WRAP box>​“If I had an hour to solve a problem I'd spend 55 minutes thinking about the problem and 5 minutes thinking about solutions.” - Albert Einstein</​WRAP>​ <WRAP box>​“If I had an hour to solve a problem I'd spend 55 minutes thinking about the problem and 5 minutes thinking about solutions.” - Albert Einstein</​WRAP>​
  
-  * Do take time to explore solutions. There are many activities which help with people really understand the problem and help develop solutions. The most common are the tools like [[https://​en.wikipedia.org/​wiki/​Value_stream_mapping|Value Stream Mapping, [[https://​en.wikipedia.org/​wiki/​5_Whys|Five Whys]], and “[[https://​en.wikipedia.org/​wiki/​Ishikawa_diagram|Fishbone Diagrams]]”,​ but there are many more informal approaches that will yield great results. For example, you could use a version of [[http://​www.liberatingstructures.com/​1-1-2-4-all/​|1,​ 2, 4, all]] to brainstorm and improve ideas.+  * Do take time to explore solutions. There are many activities which help with people really understand the problem and help develop solutions. The most common are the tools like [[https://​en.wikipedia.org/​wiki/​Value_stream_mapping|Value Stream Mapping]], [[https://​en.wikipedia.org/​wiki/​5_Whys|Five Whys]], and “[[https://​en.wikipedia.org/​wiki/​Ishikawa_diagram|Fishbone Diagrams]]”,​ but there are many more informal approaches that will yield great results. For example, you could use a version of [[http://​www.liberatingstructures.com/​1-1-2-4-all/​|1,​ 2, 4, all]] to brainstorm and improve ideas.
   * Do make metrics available with trended information showing what is important to the Team. For example, perhaps Team has decided to work Feature cycle time and throughput. Have this available so team can see that they are trending appropriately.   * Do make metrics available with trended information showing what is important to the Team. For example, perhaps Team has decided to work Feature cycle time and throughput. Have this available so team can see that they are trending appropriately.
   * Do let passionate people take responsibility for improvements. The best people to drive improvements to completion are those that are really passionate about a change. Even when that means that, from your perspective,​ you feel like you are not working the most improvement. You will have more chance of success if people are passionate about driving a change. They have “skin in the game”. Success will lead to other successes and, you never know, you idea might not be the most important thing for the Team to focus on.   * Do let passionate people take responsibility for improvements. The best people to drive improvements to completion are those that are really passionate about a change. Even when that means that, from your perspective,​ you feel like you are not working the most improvement. You will have more chance of success if people are passionate about driving a change. They have “skin in the game”. Success will lead to other successes and, you never know, you idea might not be the most important thing for the Team to focus on.
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-{{tag>​FAQ retrospective}}+===== Distributed Teams ===== 
 + 
 +A couple of additional ideas for distributed Teams: 
 + 
 +  * Do structure retrospective differently when working with distributed people so that you maximize use of overlapping time to do the things that are best done (synchronized) as a team (vs asynchronous). So for a standard structure retrospective:​ 
 + 
 +    * Set the stage: Can initially be asynchronously done in email or a text backchannel. Once the team actually meets synchronously,​ consider how you can bring “all the voices into the room.” Watch for safety based on who participates in any synchronous meeting. For example, you might sometimes need a special activity to surface an issue. 
 +    * Gather data: Can start solo and asynchronously. Each team member gathers their data asynchronously in advance and when the team meets, they can review the data together to gain shared understanding and agreement on the data. Sometimes people create a collection point where team members can collect data. 
 +    * Generate insights. Best done synchronously. This is tricky and often requires an experienced facilitator to help the team move through the “Groan Zone”. If you can, use video chat for this part of the meeting, so you can see people’s facial expressions. 
 +    * Decide what to do. Best done synchronously. Many teams have plenty of ideas for solving their issues. The problem is narrowing down those ideas down; to create small experiments. Be careful about running long lived experiments without intermediate check points along the way. It is best to have shorter term experiments to start with. 
 +    * Close the retrospective. Best done synchronously. This is where the facilitator confirms that the retrospective helped the team discover what they should amplify (e.g., doing well) and what they might change. If the participants didn’t feel the retrospective was effective, gather suggestions for improvement synchronously — if time permits — or asynchronously.” 
 +  * Do insist on video when doing a retrospective. This helps improve psychological safety. When we see each other, we learn together. We learn other people’s reactions and how they clarify issues. When team members can’t see each other, they miss the facial expressions and body language. Without video, people often misinterpret other people’s statements. 
 + 
 +===== Management ===== 
 + 
 +  * Do engaged with Teams. Set the expectation that Retrospectives are being done and, more importantly,​ that you expect that there will be things that you as management need to take on. A good question for the Team is “What happened in the last Retrospective that I can help you with?” 
 +  * Do encourage peer discussions. Sometimes seeing another Team solve a problem that seems t be related to one they are working on will offer a breakthrough for the Team. Sometimes just seeing another Team improve will encourage other Teams to try things as well. Success breeds success. 
 + 
 +{{tag>​FAQ retrospective ​ceremony}}
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  • Last modified: 2019/09/23 08:54
  • by Hans Samios