What Subjects Should We Cover at a Team Kickoff or Re-Baseline Event?
It is often useful to have a Team kick-off session for the Team. The Team Kick-off Session is a half to full day event, potentially spread over a couple of days, with all Team members in attendance. While it helps that some people involved have at least some background in Agile roles, events, and practices, this is not a requirement for the meeting. The Team can learn as it goes.
The core agenda for the Team Kick-off Session is:
- (Optional) Agile Manifesto: Refresh yourselves on the Agile Values and Principles. Do we remember the basics? (See Agile Values and Principles for more information).
- Team Name: What is the identity of the Team?
- Team Vision: Establish the Team Vision. What is the purpose of this Team? Why is it together? Who are the Customers?
- Team Roles: Understand the named Scrum roles and name someone to fill it on the Team:
- Scrum Master
- Product Owner
- Team Events: Review Scrum Team events, understand their purpose and determine how to address that purpose. Determine your overall Team timetable going forward:
- Team Skills: What skills are required to deliver value? What skills do we have? How is your team building T-shape people?
- Team Kanban: Discuss how work flows through the Team and determine the Team Kanban board:
- States (Develop, test, etc.)
- Exit agreements for each state
- Service levels swim lanes (based on type of work – standard, expedite, fixed date, etc.)
- Initial WIP limits for each state
- General Team working agreements: What are the agreements we are going to put in place to help us interact and become a successful Team? (See What Kind of Working Agreements Should We Set Up for the Team? for more information)
- Determine or update the Team Definition of Done
- (Optional) User Stories: Review definition of User Stories Help the Team understand the outcome of the work they do from the perspective of the customer by putting themselves in their shoes.
- Team Backlog: Build your initial Team Backlog. Based on Product Owner’s view of current priorities and work that is currently in-flight from Team members.
- For each item in the backlog ensure you record the swim lane (service level agreement) each work item is expected to be placed in.
- For inflight items in the backlog, ensure you record the state. New items are assumed to be place in the first colomn.
- (Optional) Story Points: Review story point estimation based on relative sizes.
- Estimate: The size of work. Get to a common understanding of the effort required to get something through the Kanban states
- Prioritize the Team Backlog
- Determine what the Team will be working on