To keep the body in good health is a duty,
otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear.
Every self-organized team requires periodic “healthchecks”. With this idea I have started to surf web in search of the best tooling that could help me with the agenda for my team’s Teambuilding retrospective….
At the same time team was “storming” and needed help to get into Solution-centric thinking …
My search resulted in making mix of two techniques and I would like to offer ready retrospective script to Scrum Masters. So, “retrospective-cocktail” I am coming up with here “mixes” “Team Barometer” & “Scaledance of an Aspect” techniques serving team to imprive key aspects of Teamwork.
This is survey-workshop format excerscize adressing 16 team characteristics, packaged as a deck of cards. Download the cards, print them, and cut them out. You want one deck for each participant. Click here to download the cards.
You also need voting cards. Original script reccomends one green, one yellow and one red card but I have used 3,2,1 and 0 planning poker cards (yes, I’ve intentionally modified and introduced the 4th state not to result into “let us take golden middle everywhere”).
Each card has a headline naming a characteristic of a team, and a green and a red statement. Excerscize is to read them out loud one by one, give people a couple of seconds to think and ask them to “poker” this aspect, collecting sum of all votes and NOT discussing estimates like in classical planning poker. Attached you can find list of aspects with an example estimates Team_Healthcheck_Aspects
Scaledance of an Aspect Approach
Idea is as simple as 0-to-10 scale with 10 representing the desired goal and 0 representing its opposite. It provides three focal states for the conversation:
- NOW: Where we are now? (value=N, current state) – an account of all that is currently contributing to that future, including past successes
- GOAL: Where we want to be in the end? (value=10) – description of a best possible future
- STEP: Where we would like to move to? (value = N + 1) – exploration of possible progress in the immediate future
Powerful questions and methaphors for those 3 states are:
NOW (methaphor: let us look back):
- Where do we stand at this moment?
- What works already so that you are already at N rather than lower?
- And how it is now?
- What is happening now?
- How did we manage to be at N?
- What was our contribution?
GOAL (methaphor: let us look back from the future position):
- What will be different, when we reached 10?
- How will others notice that we reached it?
- Suppose we reachedit, what will we do differently?
- How does the “bright” future looks now?
STEP (methaphor: imagine we are already at N+1):
- On this scale, where do we want to be, for example, in 1 month?
- Imagine we are at N+1 now. What is different?
- And what else our collegues, management, etc. might notice?
Key here to first talk about states (and not immedeately jump to actions). In Scaledance exscerscize states seen as “goal setting” tool.
- Introduction & Agenda – 5 min
- Checkin / Warmup – 5 min
- Healthcheck: aspects estimation – 15 min
- Write aspects on the board / wiki/confluence page and record sum of estimates
- Make sure you do not record individual estimates, rather how many 3,2,1 and 0s we have
- Make sure you do NOT ask “whys?” to the estimates
- All that counts is the sum of estimates of all team members
- Healthcheck: prioritisation – 5 min
- Here you can ask each team member to come up with the “backlog” of their desired top 3-5 aspects they would think team would benefit most discussing
- Then you can ask team to collaboratevly produce joint backlog of top 3-5 aspects
- This is important step as lowest estimate of an aspect does not mean this is the most important one, some of them are in realtion to one another and this relation totally unique for each team, so only team members can choose what would they benefit from the best.
- Scaledance of an aspect – 30 min per topic
- Running Scaledance for desired aspect: Now, Step
- As aspect – card already represents 0-state and 10-Goal-state you do not have to specify them
- Ask team to Describe NOW, e.g. by giving them 3 minutes for producing sticky notes
- Brainstorm together to define how N+1 looks like
- Derive Actions to make N+1 happen
- Proceed with the next Aspect
- Closure & Feedback – 5 min
Resources / Techniques / Copyrights / Thanks:
- Crisp’s Blog: Team barometer (self-evaluation tool)
- sinnvollFÜHREN: Leading Solution-Focused Retrospectives