The Rock Band Retrospective Template

You have finished your concert at the legendary Sprint Festival. It is time for the debriefing.

What is the Rock Band retrospective template?

Difficulty Level
Easy

Do you have rock'n'roll fans on your team? That's cool, so do we at Neatro. This retrospective model is an original creation of our own.

Imagine your team is a legendary rock (or metal) band. Give it a name and assign a role to each member of the group.

You have just finished your performance as part of the famous Sprint Festival.

Like any performing group, your crew meets after the show to take stock of its performance. Continuous improvement is everyone's business! 🤘

The 4 elements of the Rock Band template

The Scene
Describe how the band performed in the last cycle.
e.g., stakeholders in the pit liked the new hit named "Sprint Review", and they let it be known.
The Backstage
What did you notice that was wrong (or awkward) behind the scenes?
e.g., our latest QA phase was a little too expeditious, thankfully without consequences on the concert.
The Road Crew
Mention who remarkably helped the group and how.
e.g., Brandon completed no fewer than ten user interviews to collect feedback on our next album.
The Setlist
How can we improve our performance in the next cycle?
e.g., we could try the MoSCoW technique to facilitate the prioritization of our items.

Why & when should you use The Rock Band retrospective?

Good news: you don't need to be a true Rockstar to really enjoy the Rock Band retrospective. It is a creative and intuitive team activity that will help your teammates reflect on past events, in order to generate insights and build an efficient action plan.

This fun facilitation technique is a perfect fit for recurring team retrospectives (e.g., Sprint Retrospectives).

If you want to save much preparation time for your next retrospective, we strongly suggest you to try the Rock Band template on Neatro.

More scenarios can be addressed with the Rock Band activity template.

Conducting event or project post-mortems with the Rock Band can definitely bring a creative twist to your approach. Collect feedback from both internal and external actors, gather insights, and uncover learnings to maximize your chances to deliver even greater events or projects in the future.

How to run the Rock Band template

The Rock Band retrospective template is a creative activity made by the Neatro team. We have built and enhanced this activity with the support of the Neatro community.

You can try the Rock Band model with your team for free by signing up for Neatro. No credit card is required. Note that participants do not need to create accounts to join a retrospective with Neatro.

Although we use the Neatro experience to show how to run the Rock Band retrospective model online, you can follow this guide and apply our tips for any other tool. Let the music play on!

Step 1: Write comments
Let people write ideas and avoid group thinking

Let's consider that you have already run an Icebreaker with your team and have done a follow-up on the action items from the last retrospective. Your team is now ready to start the activity.

This first step aims to let the participants write comments and post them in the different columns of your board.

⏱️ Make sure you start a Timer. Keeping track of time is a simple but crucial tip to ensure your team will successfully run an efficient retrospective.

Each column of your board helps you organize your ideas. Even if you are the facilitator of this retrospective, you will most likely take on the participant's role as well, right? Try to be as specific as possible so that your teammates can easily understand your comments.

To provide an appropriate level of psychological security, allow participants to share comments anonymously.

At this stage, you want to avoid group thinking at all costs. People should not influence each other in the process. Make sure people cannot see what other participants are writing in this step.

Reveal all comments after everyone has finished adding comments.

👍 With Neatro – Participants will only see their own comments at this step. They also have the option of writing comments using their name or anonymously. As a Facilitator, you will be able to set a Timer visible to everybody. Also, when a participant is done writing comments, he/she can click on “I’m finished” to let everybody know he/she’s ready to move on to the next step.

Step 2: Group comments
Get your board lean and well organized

This step allows you to regroup similar comments and attach/create topics.

1/ Drag and Drop Grouping

You might have a lot of comments displayed on the board at this point. Regroup similar comments to help your teammates understand the weight of each idea.

👍 With Neatro – If you find similar ideas, drag a comment on another to create a group. Click on the group to display all of the comments.

2/ Use topics to better identify your challenges

Regrouping similar comments is not enough! Adding topics will significantly help you organize your team's ideas.

"What's a topic?" you may ask. It could be anything. We usually tend to see "core team dimensions" reflected in the topics (e.g., Ownership, Value, Speed, Process, Collaboration, etc.). Still, you could create any topic that would help you efficiently manage your team's comments.

👍 With Neatro – To add a topic to any comment on Neatro, click on the "Add Topic" button. We already created 10 Neatro topics for you based on the most common team challenges, but you can also create your own topics.

Step 3: Vote
Time to prioritize items to focus on what really matters

Proceed to a vote session to narrow down the number of items you would like to discuss in the next phase.

Two rules that we heavily suggest to apply at this step:

- Make sure that nobody can see the other's votes.

- Allow each participant to spend their votes on one or multiple items.

👍 With Neatro – The number of votes can easily be changed if needed. The Facilitator needs to click on the wheel icon to update the maximum number of votes per person.

Step 4: Build your Team Action Plan
Collectively define what needs to be done to make the team grow

Discuss the most voted topics or comments with your team to create action items. Assign an owner to each action item, and provide a short and clear description so everyone can understand how to resolve their action items.

👍 With Neatro – You can play out with a collection of sorting rules and filters to better identify the comments that need to be discussed. Once you're done with the Action Plan, you can access your retrospective report.

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