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AgilePDX Dntn Pub Lunch: Retrospectives and Inertia

McMenamins Ringlers Pub
1332 W Burnside St.
Portland, Oregon 97209, US (map)
Public WiFi

It's a McMennamin's. No more to say. We start on time and end on time.



Last month the pub lunchers pointed back to a perennially sticky topic. We know retrospectives are a key aspect of continuous improvement and progressive agility. Most of us do retrospectives regularly. Many of use use the standard references like Derby and Larsen's /Agile Retrospectives: Making Good Teams Great/. And, many, if not all of us have had the experience of nothing the team agreed to change during the retrospective actually being changed. My personal favorite was a recent retro where the team rescinded all agreements made during the retro within 90 minutes of making them. In fact, within about 5 minutes of facing the Product Owner in the planning meeting.

So, is it a lack of resolve? Is it poor facilitation on our part? Is it taking on too much? Is it not taking on doable things? What the heck?

But, sometimes things go well. Sometimes teams dig in and use their retrospectives to improve something every sprint. Sometimes team members eagerly take on facilitating their own retrospectives and teams look forward to the next retrospective even as they are planning the current sprint. Sometimes they summarize data showing the existence of organizational impediments, for a task force, and take their data to executive leadership with a viable plan for change--which is actually accepted.

What can we spot about retro's that do NOT result in change so we can call out those smells when we scent them, so we stop a sterile retro in its tracks and turn things around? Or, ensure that we develop a pattern of potency in our retrospectives?

Join us Friday, 9/4, from 12p to 1p for pub grub, beer, conversation, commiseration and a few smashingly good ideas to help you or others turn your retrospective experience around once and for all.

We'll be in the back room. Show up a few minutes early to chat with the friends and colleagues you haven't seen all summer and hang around as long as you like after to make new friends.

RSVP's to [email protected] are welcome but not required. It helps know how and whether to move the furniture, which saves us having to do it after the discussion has begun.