Sprint progression retrospective

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Retrospective about the sprint progression

This retrospective focusses on the progression within the sprint, and how the team experienced. What’s the difference between the start- and the end of the sprint? Did the team start off with everything going well but rushing towards the end of the sprint to get everything finished? Or did they work at a constant pace during the entire sprint? This retrospective format allows you to reflect on how the team is working throughout the sprint which is a good indication of where things might be improved.

The Icebreaker

This template does not contain a separate icebreaker. The icebreaker is immediately part of gathering data from the team. 

The retrospective format

This retrospective consists of 2 stages:

  1. “Beginning of the sprint:” how did you experience the beginning of the sprint? 
  2. “End of the sprint:” how did you experience the end of the sprint?

Ask the team to come up with one creative way per stage to represent how they experienced this. You can let everybody chose between searching for a representative image, meme, gif … or let them write down a few key notes on a post-it.

After explaining the 2 stages to your team, give everybody a few minutes to gather their input. After this, shortly go over everything that’s on the board and add a few notes where needed in order to have everybody understand the content that is on the board. Group item(s) when they are related or referring to the same underlying meaning.

After this, start discussing the most important item(s) in detail. You can use dot voting to determine the most important thing(s) if needed. 

While having the discussion on a topic, always focus on what’s within the control of the team. Don’t focus too much on external people or factors, but mainly on the things that are within the control of the team to identify improvement actions that the team is able to take. You want to have 1 – 2 action items at the end of the retrospective that you can implement in the next iteration(s). Remember: you will not always have big live changing action items in each retrospective. That’s also not the intention. A small action that brings a small improvements is already very good. Try to improve a little each sprint instead of trying to bring big changes at once.

About last retrospective...

A crucial part of the retrospective is to reflect on the outcome of the previous one! Teams often forget to do this, but it is very important as it gives the team the confirmation that the action items are actually important… And that we want to make sure we improve! There is a section on the top of the template where you can refer to the action items of the last retrospective. Go over them, see how you are doing in regards to them, and decide what to do next.

Rate your retro!

At the very end of the retrospective, I ask the team to quickly rate their retrospective with focus on: 

  1. Did we have a good discussion? Did we speak openly, and respect each others opinion?
  2. Do we have valuable action items? And, are we confident that we will do them in the next sprint?

We also use a feedback wall where team members can share their feedback on the retrospective. As the facilitator, you can incorporate this feedback into the next retrospective session.

Other things about the format

On the very top of the format, you can see 2 elements:

  • Action items / experiments: this is the place where you would write down the action items during the retrospective. This makes it easy to summarize them at the end of the session.
  • Idea for the next retrospective: I always like to foresee an area where people can give feedback or give input for the next retrospective. This can be feedback on the current format, ideas for a new format, tips, general feedback… Anything that can help us make the next retrospective even better! I would not make it required for people to give input in this, make them feel free to give input when they come up with something.

Download the template (for free)

You can download the Miro template for free below:

If you don’t have a premium version of Miro, you can also download the picture at the top of the screen and create the board in Google Drawings.


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