Project Retrospectives: A Handbook for Team Reviews (英語) ペーパーバック – 2000/12
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With detailed scenarios, imaginative illustrations, and step-by-step instructions, consultant Norman L. Kerth guides readers through productive, painless retrospectives of project performance.
Whether your shop calls them postmortems or postpartums or something else, project retrospectives offer organizations a formal method for preserving the valuable lessons learned from the successes and failures of every project. These lessons and the measurements they yield foster stronger teams and savings on subsequent efforts.
For a retrospective to be effective and successful, though, it needs to be safe. Kerth shows facilitators and participants how to defeat the fear of retribution and establish an air of mutual trust. One tool is Kerth's Prime Directive: Regardless of what we discover, we must understand and truly believe that everyone did the best job he or she could, given what was known at the time, his or her skills and abilities, the resources available, and the situation at hand.
Applying years of experience as a project retrospective facilitator for software organizations, Kerth reveals his secrets for managing the sensitive, often emotionally charged issues that arise as teams relive and learn from each project.
Don't move on to your next project without consulting and using this readable, practical handbook. Each member of your team will be better prepared for the next deadline.
Project Retrospectives are review and improvement sessions which the project team does at the end of a project. A typical project retrospective takes a couple of days. During these days, there are a bunch of retrospective exercises which can be follows (and are described in the book). These exercises create a safe environment, help the project team remember the past and help them learn from it. An retrospective is not done properly if it doesn't also result in some improvement actions.
I've used Norm's exercises in my own retrospectives and they work exceptionally well. This book is therefore a treasure of practical advise. If you feel uncomfortable when reading the first description (as some exercises might), try not to discard the exercise, but try it out. Often you will learn and find that they work surprisingly good.
In the world of Agile Development, retrospectives have become an essential part of any agile method. These retrospectives are iteration retrospectives (or heartbeat retrospectives). They are shorter, but the ideas are the same. Much of Norm's exercises can also be used in that context.
As mentioned earlier, a must read for anyone serious in product development.