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The Three Little Pigs Retrospective Template

Strengthen the foundations of your team! A fun activity that uses the Three Little Pigs story to foster a conversation on how to make your process more solid.
The Three Little Pigs Retrospective Illustration for Neatro
The Three Little Pigs Retrospective Template in Neatro

What is the Three Little Pigs retrospective technique?

Do you remember that classic tale named the Three Little Pigs? We are sure you remember James Halliwell-Phillipps' story, but let's refresh our memories just a bit.

The Big Bad Wolf actively threatens the Three Little Pigs; therefore, our three friends need to do something to save their lives. So each of them decides to build their own house with a specific material choice.

One pig builds his house with straw, another chooses sticks, and the last one goes with bricks. The Wolf easily blows off the first two houses but, fortunately, struggles with the brick house.

So how does this famous tale works in a retrospective format? Although you can tackle a wide range of challenges through this retrospective technique, the Three Little Pigs is a fun way to discuss your team's processes.

To understand the point of this technique, you need to classify your ideas in three columns:

  • The house of straw (anything weak that we do)

  • The house of sticks (kind of solid, but could collapse at any time)

  • The house of bricks (real solid)

Well... do you believe your team crafts a product (or conducts a project) made of straw, sticks, or bricks? Do you think the Big Bad Wolf can end up being a real threat at some point? 🐷

The 3 elements of Three Little Pigs

Retrospective Column House of straw in Neatro
House of Straw
What do we do that just about hangs together, but could collapse easily?
e.g., our deployment script is very manual, and prone to error.
Retrospective Column House of sticks in Neatro
House of Sticks
What do we do that is pretty solid, but could be improved?
e.g., although we keep a frequent contact with customers, I think we should contact at least 5 of them every week.
Retrospective Column House of bricks in Neatro
House of Bricks
What do we do that is very solid and we need to continue doing?
e.g., our team spirit is awesome, we should all make sure to cultivate it constantly.

Why & when should you use the Three Little Pigs retrospective?

The Three Little Pigs retrospective is an excellent choice to examine any unstable parts of your Sprint, project, or product and make them solid. In addition, this activity is a chance to celebrate all the really solid and reliable things your team does.

The Three Little Pigs is undoubtedly one of the best retrospectives to learn from our failures in a relaxed way. The output of such a retrospective will help your team members get better together.

Moreover, this format will help you break the retrospective routine.

We recommend the Three Little Pigs activity for any Sprint Retrospective (or recurring team retrospective, if you don't work with Sprints). You can also pick this format for a fun yet effective project post-mortem that heavily relies on how your next project could be improved. Finally, the Three Little Pigs technique can be an exciting choice for self-reflection sessions.

The Three Little Pigs Retrospective Icon
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