Pick activities that fit forming teams.

These activities work well for teams that are in the “Forming” stage. Pick an activity for each of the five phases of your next retrospective.

2Gathering data

Lean Coffee

Set a timebox and collect topics for discussion. Each person dot-votes on their two preferred topics. After talking about the highest-voted topic for five minutes, do a Roman vote. If the majority gives a thumbs-up, continue for another five minutes. If not, move to the next topic. Repeat until the timebox ends.

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3Developing insights

The 5 Whys

Split participants into groups of up to four people. Each group explores one of the main issues identified earlier by repeatedly asking “why did that happen?” until they find the root cause. Afterwards, each group shares their findings with the others.

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4Deciding on actions

Cutting Actions

Write the issue(s) the team wants to tackle on the whiteboard. Have them suggest steps to solve the problem. For each suggestion, ask if it can be completed in one iteration. If not, cut the action into smaller steps. Repeat this until you have several realistic options. Have the participants dot-vote to pick two to three for the next sprint.

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Note to Self

Each participant reflects on their own behavior during the last iteration and comes up with a change they want to make during the next one. They write a note about it to themselves without sharing it with the group. Encourage them to keep their note private and refer back to it daily during the next iteration.

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