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Topics: Agile, Communications Management, Stakeholder Management
How can I motivate team members to participate in project retrospective analysis?
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The project retrospective meeting helps the team to analyze both successes and the failures, so the team and organization can improve how they work going forward. I think the main purpose of a project "postmortem" is to help the team to shed the tension, crisis and chaos from the project, so they can approach the next one with a good attitude and open mind. What is your opinion?
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In my experience most team members are ok with a retrospective as it's at the end of a project or iteration, and people are less stressed and open up more about ways to improve things.
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1 reply by Anish Abraham
Mar 09, 2018 10:40 AM
Anish Abraham
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Glad to know about your experience, Sante.
I have mixed response, so need to try something different. May be this works fine in a projectized organizational structure.
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I think reterospectic especially when you are applying agile and/or Scrum are Key. This is the main meeting where the team themselves can improve and adapt. I think team members look forward for the retrospective.
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1 reply by Anish Abraham
Mar 09, 2018 10:41 AM
Anish Abraham
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Thanks Rami, for your feedback on this.
I agree, team members may feel better after they had a chance to discuss the outcome.
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I think it is vital to explain to everyone on the team why this is such an important step and how it will actually help each project member in a similar situation or in similar projects.
In my experience explaining why things are done and why one considers them important can really help increase awareness and motivation to participate.
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2 replies by Anish Abraham and Walter Pilimon
Mar 09, 2018 10:51 AM
Anish Abraham
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I agree Nico and thanks for your feedback on this.
I think as a project leader my role would be to let all team members vent and to keep everyone focused on the process.
Mar 15, 2018 8:34 AM
Walter Pilimon
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It is also important that people propose how to avoid/overcome/plan better for the future and really take these suggestions into consideration and practice. 5 retrospectives, dozens of hours, lots of proposed improvements, but no actual implementation = people unmotivated to go to the next retrospective.
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1. You should not wait to the end
2. Please do not call it postmortem
3. learning is an ongoing process and require a culture of understanding not a blame culture
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1 reply by Anish Abraham
Mar 09, 2018 10:52 AM
Anish Abraham
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Thanks, Mounir for your feedback on this. I really appreciate it.
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While is a matter of continues improvement my personal opinion is not to wait to an specific time and an specific meeting. It must be done continuously.
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2 replies by Anish Abraham and Nico Schuster
Mar 09, 2018 6:17 AM
Nico Schuster
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Agree.. it should be a continuous process. Nevertheless, in the end it's good to wrap it up and share the knowledge.
Mar 09, 2018 11:00 AM
Anish Abraham
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Thanks Sergio, and I agree that it should be a continuous process.
I think if we analyze the project routinely and act upon what we discover, it can improve efficiency.
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Be able to show the rationale for the activity, and how the take-away's turn into action and improvement.

Also, make it fun for everyone, not too dry, interactive, and engaging. And, maybe bring some chocolate :)
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3 replies by Anish Abraham, Nico Schuster, and Sante Vergini
Mar 09, 2018 6:16 AM
Nico Schuster
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I love the chocolate part :)
Mar 09, 2018 8:28 AM
Sante Vergini
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Dark chocolate.
Mar 09, 2018 10:35 AM
Anish Abraham
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Thanks Andrew, for your feedback on this.
We used to do cake or pizza with fun games like "bowling" but never tried chocolate. Will try next time :)
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Mar 09, 2018 6:12 AM
Replying to Andrew Craig
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Be able to show the rationale for the activity, and how the take-away's turn into action and improvement.

Also, make it fun for everyone, not too dry, interactive, and engaging. And, maybe bring some chocolate :)
I love the chocolate part :)
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1 reply by Andrew Craig
Mar 09, 2018 9:51 AM
Andrew Craig
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Haha, absolutely. Wasn’t sure if anyone would catch it.
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Mar 09, 2018 4:34 AM
Replying to Sergio Luis Conte
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While is a matter of continues improvement my personal opinion is not to wait to an specific time and an specific meeting. It must be done continuously.
Agree.. it should be a continuous process. Nevertheless, in the end it's good to wrap it up and share the knowledge.
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Create a safe environment for folks to express their views and use multiple techniques to elicit feedback. The latter is especially important when retros are done frequently to avoid staleness - think Lego, drawing materials, and so on...

Kiron
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1 reply by Anish Abraham
Mar 09, 2018 11:06 AM
Anish Abraham
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Thanks Kiron, for your comments on this.
I think providing an opportunity to voice them goes a long way towards diffusing emotions.
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Mar 09, 2018 6:12 AM
Replying to Andrew Craig
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Be able to show the rationale for the activity, and how the take-away's turn into action and improvement.

Also, make it fun for everyone, not too dry, interactive, and engaging. And, maybe bring some chocolate :)
Dark chocolate.
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1 reply by Andrew Craig
Mar 09, 2018 9:50 AM
Andrew Craig
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Of course. That certainly is my preference as well. One of my previous leaders would always have some sort of chocolate, whether for meetings or in his office.
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