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Q:

What retrospective formats have you been using in the past?

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The retrospective format provided by Scrum Guide contains three items:

Sprint retrospective Model

What went well?

What didn’t?

Action Items to improve

This is the usual format that is being used by the Scrum teams. But after a while, it gets monotonous to use the same. And as each team is different, the same formula might not go well with all. There are many different retrospective ideas out in the Agile world, including distinctions and trimmings on the rudimentary questions and creative facilitation techniques.  Scrum Masters should develop a toolkit of retrospective techniques that they can use and adapt to their teams. Let’s look at a few:

Sail Boat - The idea is to draw a speedboat on a flip chart and ask the team, “If our team is this speedboat, what anchors are holding us back and keeping us from getting faster/better?” Then the team collects all their ideas on Post-Its, puts them below the boat and draws a line from the boat to the anchor.

Speed Car - This is a simple activity for helping the team to identify things that make them move faster, and things that slow them down.

There are several other ideas as well, like:

Liked, learned, lacked, longed for (4 L’s)

Starfish (small, large)

Stop, start, continue

Mad, sad, glad
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