Patrick Kua has recently published The Retrospective Handbook which provides practical advice on how to make retrospectives much more effective. In this book Patrick draws upon his 8 years of valuable experience with retrospectives in real agile teams.
Dialogue sheets allow teams to hold facilitator-less retrospectives. They promote self-organization and encourage everyone to speak in the exercise. This results in great levels of participation in and higher energy levels in teams. The sheet itself is A1 in size, 8 times larger than a regular sheet, pre printed with instructions and questions to motivation discussion.
This paper tells how we coached the adaption process of agile software development in a specific company, with a focus on one mechanism – one-hour retrospectives – we employ to guide team members realize the needed change and let them lead it. From our perspective, the stage in which team members start facilitating the retrospective sessions by themselves is a landmark of success.
The 'Retrospective Prime Directive' is often used during retrospectives to encourage learning without recriminations. Here a group of senior practitioners looks at its benefits and difficulties. 10
Why do Agile teams get stuck in the just-average "norming" stage, never making it to the exciting high "performing" stage of team growth? The invisible "learning bottleneck" can stunt performance. 16
When we discard traditional SDLC rules, how should we work? Rachel Davies explains how teams can use Retrospectives to reflect on their process and to improve it gradually over time. 3
As we practice various Agile disciplines, the effects of our words and actions actively create, and re-create over time, the environment in which our teams and projects operate - for good or ill. 3
Retrospectives are traditionally held at the end of a project - too late to help. Agile teams need retrospectives that are iterative and incremental, so improvement can start as soon as possible.
David Spann introduces Jean Tabaka's book, in which she shares stories and facilitation techniques to make teams and entire organizations effective, and provides templates to get them started.