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  • Brian Cunningham thinks this is interesting:

Inexperienced retrospective leaders like to skip setting the stage and plow ahead into the “meat” of a retrospective. We never regret spending time setting the stage—and neither should you. “Saving” time by skipping this part costs time later. When people don’t speak early, they may not contribute at all—and may not buy into the team’s insights and decisions. When they don’t know the approach, people have trouble focusing and may take the group on a tangent. Team values and working agreements help keep the conversations and interactions productive.

So, don’t skip setting the stage, and don’t skimp on it either

From

Cover of Agile Retrospectives

Note

A really good summary of why we should always "set the stage".