The Ideal Format of Agile Retrospective

Agile Retrospective

The Ideal Format of Agile Retrospective. Inspection and adaptation are two skills that are likely to be the most significant aspects of your Agile journey. This allows you to iterate and enhance your output, methods, procedures, and the final result on a continuous basis. Retrospectives provide you the opportunity to reflect on the sprint you’ve just completed and create plans on how to make it better in the next one.

But to keep it interesting, you might be looking for the best formats of agile retrospective and that’s why we are here to assist you.

Our Top 3 Agile Retrospective Formats 

  1. 4Ls Retrospective – Liked, Lacked, Learned, and Longed For.

The team takes stock of the previous sprint, identifying elements that they find useful and those they feel are lacking. Afterward, they share some of the things they learn, and ultimately, they share something they aspire or desire to be.

How does it work?

·         Create four lists or spaces on your Agile retrospective board, one for each of the following: liked, lacked, learned, and longed for.

·         Encourage participants to brainstorm ideas for each category.

·         Hold a group conversation regarding the ideas that have been brainstormed.

·         Vote on an item to use as the basis for a new activity. It is something on which the team will be concentrating in the upcoming sprints.

  1. Three Little Pigs

Reflects on the overall agility and technical competence. In this format, the team relies on three factors:

·         What they do well.

·         What they could improve.

·         What they consider to be their weakest performance areas.

How does it work?

·         Using the fable of The Three Little Pigs, the team creates a canvas with three houses on it: a straw house, a stick house, and a brick house, all of which are made of different materials.

·         From the foundation of the house of bricks, the group brainstorms what they are “rock solid” at doing. In another way, figure out what the team does exceptionally well, both in terms of teamwork and technical execution.

·         In the second place, they stuff the house of sticks with things that they do reasonably well but could be better at.

·         Finally, they discuss topics that are hardly being performed by the team and that are likely in need of immediate attention or remediation, such as These objects will be placed in the straw hut.

·         Encourage the team to discuss each item on the list. Vote on which things from the house of straw and the house of sticks should be queued up as backlog items to improve performance and reduce technical debt in the long run. Top items from the home of bricks are things that the team should be proud of, and they should seek methods to improve upon them in the future.

  1. Pre-Mortem Retro

The team is tasked with imagining the upcoming sprint and identifying potential problems. Afterward, the team divides the items into two categories: “what the team can control” and “what the team cannot control.” The team then brainstorms ways to reply to each list in the most appropriate way.

How does it work?

·         It is necessary to perform an Agile retrospective when the team has completed their planning for the upcoming sprint. A few days after becoming acquainted with the sprint backlog, the team is asked to engage in informal discussions regarding “what if” scenarios that could arise throughout the sprint.

·         Request that each team member jots down three different things that could go wrong after 5 minutes of conversation has taken place.

·         After that, ask the team to separate their concerns into two categories: “what the team can control” and “what the team cannot control.”

·         Then, work backward from the list of “things the team can control” and ask the team what can be done to restrict or reduce the most significant risks.

·         As a result, using the list of “things the team cannot control,” ask the team to determine what they would prefer to be done about the situation, and develop a list for the Scrum Master and Product Owner to use as impediments when presenting their case to the relevant audiences.


The benefits of team retrospectives include not only that they provide an opportunity for high-performing teams to continue to grow, but they also provide an opportunity for new or failing teams to build team cohesion. To get started, try one of these Agile retrospectives and take notes on what you learn. 

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