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One week sprint, 45 minute Retrospective plan

We are currently helping out at a client, and I found myself in the ScrumMaster role 🙂 It’s been a while! They run one week sprints and their teams are 1 or 2 people and they change every month or so. This seems to work for them on the most part. I need to run a retrospective for two teams at the same time. One team of 2 people and one team of one. As I haven’t been able to clone myself as yet, this needed to happen together, but allow each team to reach their own improvement point.

The Plan:




How did this work in reality?

The person on the team of one was off sick, so the retro ended up being just for one team of two – this made it a bit easier to facilitate and interact with the team.

The rest of this feedback came from the Plus/Delta exercise. It shows how important it is as a facilitator to get feedback from your team.

This team usually does the same retro every week (same activities), so the different activities felt a bit weird to them. I’m a bit surprised I fell into this trap, I do know better 🙂 If your team is used to doing something only change one activity at a time, changing everything makes them feel a bit unsettled and uncomfortable.

They enjoyed the first exercise (Check In) but felt it didn’t lead anywhere – so perhaps a Diverge section that flows from it will be better.

They enjoyed the questions as it made them really think. They did miss not having a timeline activity to remind them of what happened over the week of their sprint.

They liked getting to one action that is very solid and they know will do. They are used to having a list of goals they want to achieve during the sprint.

Thank you Concetta and Wilhelm!





4 thoughts on “One week sprint, 45 minute Retrospective plan”

  1. Sam this seems like a nice change up for a retrospective. I have mostly used the start, stop and continue and occasionally the triple nickels for my retrospective exercises. I am looking for an opportunity to use this. Thanks for sharing!

  2. I like the positive approach that you took for this retrospective. Not everybody dares to try new things, you took a risk but it paid off by having 1 action for the team to focus upon.

    Thanks for sharing your experience!

    Co-author of Getting Value out of Agile Retrospectives

  3. Nice format! Was the brainstorming on the sprint in general or based on the output of the diverging phase?

    I find the retrospective is the hardest thing to scale down for 1 week sprints given you will often need some form of root cause analysis. Especially when you have a new/bigger team.

    1. In general when you brainstorm, people think about the most recent things, so in this case the natural instinct is to brainstorm about stuff from the divergent phase. However if someone wanted to add something that hadn’t been mentioned before I think that would be okay.

      As for scaling down the retro, I think for one week sprints it might be a good idea to do a longer one once a month where you can do some good root cause analysis, and keeping them shorter the rest of the time. People don’t often have the energy to dig really deep every week.

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