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15 April 2013

Blueprint for a Sprint Retrospective

The Retrospective
Sprint number (Some unthinkably large number)
Duration: November 2012 to April 2013

Not strictly part of a retrospective, but we are Agile here so we adapt to stakeholder needs.
I have just spent a week on holiday for the first time in more than 12 months. It was a wonderful holiday to a stunning part of the world. I spent time with my kids, explored rain-forests and saw a crocodile or two.
I did not engage in work, even though I noted emails flying past my inbox, but, I did dream about work every single night. This indicates an overdue need for a personal and professional retrospective

Things that went well;
  • I learned how to uncover the size of a hidden technical backlog and plan sprints around it.
  • I learned how to share knowledge, quickly and without lecturing
  • I learned how deliver less than desirable news
  • I got to meet and work with a number of interesting and deeply intelligent human beings
  • I learned how to set up and administer Jira and Greenhopper like a boss
  • I delivered what I said I would deliver, when I said I would deliver it
  • I didn't hide and I took responsibility for my actions when I got it wrong
  • I submitted all my study assignments and scored respectably for them
  • I didn't neglect my family quite as much as I could have
  • I discovered my family are more self-sufficient than I thought

Opportunities for Improvement;

  • Do better due diligence ALWAYS
  • Correct, detailed requirements are really really important, but the details about how they are shared and recorded is not.
  • Leadership is not given it is always taken, but “followship” must be given freely
  • Yes assumptions do make an “Ass out of U and Me”

Critical Outcomes;
  • I learned SO MUCH, I discovered that I am capable of doing so much more than I thought I could
  • I handled situations I had never come across before (because I had to)
  • I reaffirmed for myself, what I really want to do and more importantly, what I do not want to do
  • I care about doing what I do well, not just the technical practical side of being a BA or a PO but both; I think/know that I can be a better BA if I use Agile methodologies. Either, by itself is not enough and never will be 
  • I want to make beautiful, usable software, but in the best possible way.
  • I want to really;
    • understand how this can best be done; and
    • teach others how to do it
Action Items;
  • Transfer from my current professional doctorate to a PhD
  • Find a job which pays the bills, but doesn't follow me on holiday
  • Write the darn PhD
  • Find a nice university where I can research this stuff, write about it, talk about it and teach it; without starving in the process
  • Finish seeing my kids through high school first