On Self Retrospectives

Little Known Secrets of Performing Self-Retrospectives, The Agile Way!

In the world of Project Management who would not have come across one or the other agile process or practices?

One of the important Agile practices often performed is to conduct periodical retrospective at the end of each iteration or a sprint.

In simple words, such a practice means that you’re giving deliberate attention to improvement.

In retrospectives, you are inspecting what is expected in the specific iteration or a sprint. You learn through your mistakes and focus on what you can do better in the next iteration/sprint.

And, since your focus is on constant improvement, you see incremental improvements in the project, isn’t it?

The opportunity here is to apply the same “improving by retrospection” principle in your personal life.  It can be applied to measure your personal performance. If we consider our life as a film, you are playing various characters in your life. Some examples of such characters are son, father, spouse, student, musician, friend, etc.  You can perform at your best given you have defined set of measurable goals attached with each of such characters.

So the question is how you can measure your personal performance in each of the characters you are playing?

Here is an agile mechanism to handle this:

  1. At the start of every week, define a set of measurable goals for each of the characters you are going to play in that week.
  2. As the week passes by, record your activities in a journal.
  3. In the weekend, pick a character at a time and perform a retrospective:
    • What went well?
    • What did not go well?
    • What can be improved and taken to the next level?
  4. While starting the next week, align yourself with the answers you found for the above questions.

Such retrospectives can enable you to align your actions and help you in going to the next level.  All you need is the willingness to go to the next level and tools as simple as a pen and paper. Worth giving some attention!