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The Art of Agile Development

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Retrospectives

Note

Whole Team

We continually improve our work habits.

No process is perfect. Your team is unique, as are the situations you encounter, and they change all the time. You must continually update your process to match your changing situations. Retrospectives are a great tool for doing so.

Types of Retrospectives

The most common retrospective, the iteration retrospective, occurs at the end of every iteration.

In addition to iteration retrospectives, you can also conduct longer, more intensive retrospectives at crucial milestones. These release retrospectives, project retrospectives, and surprise retrospectives (conducted when an unexpected event changes your situation) give you a chance to reflect more deeply on your experiences and condense key lessons to share with the rest of the organization.

These other retrospectives are out of the scope of this book. They work best when conducted by neutral third parties, so consider bringing in an experienced retrospective facilitator. Larger organizations may have such facilitators on staff (start by asking the HR department), or you can bring in an outside consultant. If you’d like to conduct them yourself, [Derby & Larsen] and [Kerth] are great resources.

How to Conduct an Iteration Retrospective

Anybody can facilitate an iteration retrospective if the team gets along well. An experienced, neutral facilitator is best to start with. When the retrospectives run smoothly, give other people a chance to try.

Everyone on the team should ...

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