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Spicing up agile retrospectives - TopConf Linz 2017 - Ben Linders


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The agile manifesto proposes a “team reflects on how to become more effective”. Agile retrospectives can be used to inspect and adapt the way of working. Ben Linders, co-author of Getting Value out of Agile Retrospectives, will talk about the why, what and how of agile retrospectives, with many practical tips, stories, and examples.The agile manifesto proposes that a “team reflects on how to become more effective”. Agile retrospectives can be used to inspect and adapt the way of working. Ben Linders, co-author of Getting Value out of Agile Retrospectives, will talk about the why, what and how of agile retrospectives, with many practical tips, stories, and examples.

Retrospectives help teams to deploy agile practices in an effective way. The retrospective facilitator (often the Scrum master) should have a toolbox of retrospective exercises, and be able to pick the most effective ones. Retrospectives are a great way for teams to improve their way of working, to become more agile and lean. Getting actions out of a retrospective that are doable, and getting them done helps teams to learn and improve continuously.

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Spicing up agile retrospectives - TopConf Linz 2017 - Ben Linders

  1. 1. @BenLinders 1 Ben Linders Consulting Topconf Linz March 1, 2017 Ben Linders Spicing up Agile Retrospectives
  2. 2. @BenLinders 2 Ben Linders Consulting Key Takeaways • “Why” and “what” of Retrospectives • Retrospective Exercises and Examples • Facilitating Retrospectives With agile retrospectives teams drive their own actions! Ben Linders
  3. 3. @BenLinders 3 Ben Linders Consulting Agile, Lean, Quality & Continuous Improvement Trainer / Coach / Adviser / Author / Speaker Recognized Expert on Agile Retrospectives CMMI & People-CMM Assessor Freelance Editor for Ben Linders Co-Author Getting Value out of Agile Retrospectives English Dutch French Japanese Spanish Italian Chinese Russian Polish German Greek Turkish Vietnamese Czech Author: What Drives Quality & Continuous Improvement eBook: Download from Amazon, InfoQ or Leanpub Print: Buy on Amazon or other bookstores
  4. 4. @BenLinders 4 Ben Linders Consulting State of Practice Agile Retrospectives Doing them? Like doing them? Valuable?
  5. 5. @BenLinders 5 Ben Linders Consulting Agile Retrospectives Agile practice for teams to reflect on their way of working and to continuously become better in what they do. Focus upon • Teamworking • Self organizing What is an Agile Retrospectives
  6. 6. @BenLinders 6 Ben Linders Consulting Purpose of Retrospectives • With team’s authority comes responsibility for WoW • No “first time right” • Ok to fail, if you learn from it • Continuous improvement Sustainable Improvement through Agile Retrospectives
  7. 7. @BenLinders 7 Ben Linders Consulting
  8. 8. @BenLinders 8 Ben Linders Consulting Retrospectives with Kanban • Fixed cycle / cadence Every week / 2 weeks, etc • When needed Impediment raised / Stand up stop-the-line Issue board  Start from where you are  Kaizen, small continuous steps
  9. 9. @BenLinders 9 Ben Linders Consulting Prime Directive “Regardless of what we discover, we understand and truly believe that everyone did the best job they could, given what they knew at the time, their skills and abilities, the resources available, and the situation at hand.”  Norm Kerth Create an Open Culture where team member Speak Up with Respect for each other to Learn and Improve Prime Directive in 9 Languages Soft Skills Matter
  10. 10. @BenLinders 10 Ben Linders Consulting Team Development Excellent teams: • are self organized & take responsibility, • value collaboration & interaction, • and want learn and improve themselves. Agile Retrospectives:  empower teams  help teams to take action  enable sustainable improvement
  11. 11. @BenLinders 11 Ben Linders Consulting Example: Failed sprint The Sprint that failed One-Word Exercise: • Deal with Feelings • Trust & Respect • Empowerment
  12. 12. @BenLinders 12 Ben Linders Consulting Example: Not able to improve Team that wasn’t a team yet 5-Times Why exercise • Getting to know each other • Collaborate • Skills to Improve
  13. 13. @BenLinders 13 Ben Linders Consulting Retrospective Exercises • Asking questions • One-word retrospective • Root Cause Analysis • Asking Why? • Strenghts (Solution Focused) • Perfection game • Action priorities • Retrospective of Retrospectives • Teams with multiple customers • Remote Teams • Futurespectives • Strengths/Core Qualities • Self-assessment Game • Agile journey • Safety check • Faces Jack Sparrow
  14. 14. @BenLinders 14 Ben Linders Consulting Toolbox of Retrospective Exercises • Teams differ • Needs vary • More value • Keep it fresh You can plan a retrospective meeting, and think about the exercise you want to use, but be open to change it on the spot whenever needed. Toolbox of Retrospective Techniques
  15. 15. @BenLinders 15 Ben Linders Consulting Capable Retrospective Facilitators Facilitated by capable professionals: • Qualified facilitators • Train: Purpose, techniques, skills • Mentoring & coaching • Communities of Practice Agile Improvement Effective and Efficient Retrospectives:  More Impact  Less time
  16. 16. @BenLinders 16 Ben Linders Consulting Do and Evaluate Retrospectives Start with retrospectives in your first iteration Simple technique: asking questions or boat exercise Evaluate the Retrospective: • Is this useful? • Helps to get a shared understanding? • Do the actions make sense? • Does meeting as a team to reflect feel good? 
  17. 17. @BenLinders 17 Ben Linders Consulting Vital Few Actions • Small Actions • Frequent Change • Focus on Value • Stop Starting, Start Stopping • Kanban Short Cycled Improvement Vital Few Actions
  18. 18. @BenLinders 18 Ben Linders Consulting Designing your Retrospective
  19. 19. @BenLinders 19 Ben Linders Consulting Spicing Up your Retrospective Valuable Agile Retrospectives: • Well Facilitated • Effective Exercises • Vital Few Actions
  20. 20. @BenLinders 20 Ben Linders Consulting Questions?Questions? Ben Linders Independent Consultant Agile, Lean, Quality & Continuous Improvement @BenLinders
  21. 21. @BenLinders 21 Ben Linders Consulting Spicing up Retrospectives Full Day Workshops  Why and How  Business Benefits  Facilitation Skills  Exercises Workshop Agile Retrospectives Spice up your Agile Retrospectives
  22. 22. @BenLinders 22 Ben Linders Consulting Getting More out of Agile & Lean Practices for teams and stakeholders to develop the right products, deliver faster, increase quality, and create happy high performing teams. Full Day Workshops: Deploying Agile practices effectively Improve Collaboration Tips & Trick for Agile & Lean Improve Continuously Increase your organization's agility!
  23. 23. @BenLinders 23 Ben Linders Consulting Retrospectives Book Getting Value out of Agile Retrospectives By Luis Gonçalves & Ben Linders Download from InfoQ or Leanpub Buy on Amazon or Lulu Mailinglist:
  24. 24. @BenLinders 24 Ben Linders Consulting Continuous Improvement Become aware of importance of continuous improvement, Explore how it’s engrained in agile software development Suggestions that you can use in your daily work to improve continuously Increase your organization's agility! “Continuous Improvement is the act of continuously doing whatever helps to become better and thus more valuable”
  25. 25. @BenLinders 25 Ben Linders Consulting Retrospectives Book Bundle Six successful retrospectives books • Getting Value out of Agile Retrospectives • Fun Retrospectives • Fifty Quick Ideas to Improve Your Retrospectives • The Retrospective Handbook • Retrospectives for Organizational Change • The Retrospectives Kickstarter These books will make your agile retrospectives rock! Teams will love to do them :-). Discounted price: $30,48 (excl. VAT)
  26. 26. @BenLinders 26 Ben Linders Consulting Assessing your Agility Over 40 tools: • Self-Assessment checklists • Readyness checks • Maturity assessments • Agile health checks • Measurements • And much more! Agile Self-Assessments
  27. 27. @BenLinders 27 Ben Linders Consulting Why Retrospectives? To help teams to solve problems and improve themselves! • Becoming Agile and Lean • Make existing processes more Agile • Increase Value of Agile • Less resistance to Change