How to Run the Ideal Sprint Retrospective: a Guide
We’re sure you probably know that a good sprint is a planned, constructive sprint: but how do you get from knowing this to actually doing this?
Running an ideal sprint retrospective has a whole range of parts that, done correctly, will improve your sprints for years to come (we hope). Get it wrong, and that sprint won't be going the way you think it will.
Here's our quick guide to running the ideal sprint retrospective in every perspective!
One of the most important aspects of any effectively-run sprint is timing.
Just as with most things in life, getting the timing right of anything is where your sprint (or other life event) will be make or break. This is incredibly true of sprints: run your retrospective too early, and the sprint won't be over, or the hard lessons won't be learned; do it too much time after the fact and important details might be missed, forgotten or covered up.
Every sprint event (retrospective, review, demo) has to be the sum of its parts. And these parts? Your teammates!
Without a culture of openness, trust, and lack of blame, your sprint is practically doomed to become a quagmire of unpleasantness at worst, and unproductiveness at best.
Your teammates need to be made to settle in and open up quickly, and getting that to happen (under the pressures of time constraints) is hard enough: you need some tried and tested, fun but not uncomfortable icebreaker questions!
When you think ‘sprint retro’, do you automatically think ‘fun’ too?
Probably not. And you wouldn't be alone.
That’s because sprints aren't designed to be fun: they're designed to be educational and productive, in the present and the future. But, neither fun nor productivity need to be sacrificed at the expertise of your teammates and personal enjoyment!
Know Where You're At
This is probably where most sprints fall down: they try to cover too much ground, in not enough time.
However, really drilling down and ensuring your sprint events - retrospectives, reviews, and demos, if you're lucky enough to have them - can't be carbon copies of one another.
That means having a clear idea in your head, and a clear explanation and outcomes for event attendees, of what you want to achieve in each sprint event. Because sprint reviews and sprint retrospectives aren't one and the same.
Take the Heat Off. Run Your Sprint Retro for Free
Your sprint retrospective doesn't have to be so hard to run, with so many moving parts. In fact, you can easily run an effective, quick, and yet fun sprint retro...for free...with yours truly - GoRetro.
GoRetro is fun, free, and colorful used religiously by the likes of Adobe, Lyft, Netflix and more.
You get a fun and professional tool, designed just for this very reason; your team gets a blameless, exciting learning experience that they won't soon forget...and even might look forward to!
Check out GoRetro, and see how your sprints change for the better!