Designing a new kind of retro meeting

When everything is changing around you, every demand on your time and energy seems both urgent and important. Breaking that insta-response cycle, finding time for reflection and clarity, can be difficult.

Talking to friends and colleagues recently, Sally and I have learned that many newly-distributed teams are not yet ready to provide this kind of space for calm, clear thinking.

So – we want to try to create an online community that does. And we want your help with figuring out how to do it.

Even when you’re crazy busy, finding time for reflection is not impossible. All you need is:

  • a regular spot in your diary
  • a structured method to focus your thoughts
  • a community of peers to support and encourage you

If you’ve had experience of Agile methodology, you’ll be familiar with the ‘retro’ meeting.

A retro, or retrospective, is an opportunity for the Agile team to take a deep breath and reflect on what’s happened recently, and to agree on simple steps to maintain morale and improve team performance. A well-run retro is short and energising.

What Sally and I are proposing is an online retro meeting, 30 minutes every second Friday, where people from lots of different workplaces come together to share their experiences and insights.

Yes, it’s another video meeting.

No, it’s not like all the others. The fortnightly Friday Retro all about slowing down, achieving clarity, making deliberate choices about your own attitudes and behaviors.

We’ve already made some notes about how the Friday Retro might work. Based on your own experience, what should we be aware of before we start? What ground-rules might we need? How can we make a group experience valuable to people from different organisations and industries?

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