In my last post I mentioned that we tried the Hot Air Balloon retrospective at the end of an incident (which was more like a PIR – post incident review).
Yesterday we tried it again and this time it was at the end of our iteration.
Once we were done with our art work, I asked the team to think back over the events of the past two weeks (our iteration length) and using post-it notes place their thoughts on what will carry us forward (fuels) and what will hold us back (ropes) on to the board.
We drew a dotted line through the middle of the board to represent the boundaries between fuels and ropes and grouped the post-it notes into themes for discussion.
What was interesting was that there were a number of topics that were closely linked to both fuels and ropes. This allowed us to easily talk about both the positive and negative aspect of those themes and get really clear actions for the things we wanted to stop doing and keep doing in our next iteration and beyond.
I’d highly recommend this retrospective style if your team is looking for a way to improve the way they work as it really exposes their likes and dislikes.