Many times I get invited to facilitate a retrospective. When this happen, I typically ask a few questions to the person and then decide the activities for planning my retrospective steps.

Please find below the questions that guide me on deciding the activities and the retrospective agenda.

  1. Is everyone at the same place or do we need an online retrospective board?
  2. How many people will participate on the retrospective?
  3. Is the participation mandatory or optionall?
  4. When was your last retrospective?
  5. What is the context for this retrospective? (Is it a Sprint retrospective? Something really bad or great just happened and you want to focus on it? Is this a new team and we should think about team building activities? Anything major is about to happen and we should prepare for it?
  6. Which areas or themes do you want to focus on? (e.g. people and interactions / process / product features; within team boundaries / outside the team boundaries; weekdays working hours / weekdays non-working hours / weekend)
  7. Which sentence best describe what you want? (A) I want to people to decide upon and sign up for action items, or (B) I want people to feel heart, to share their feelings and to be recognised for the good things.


The answers will help me choosing and combining the activities to tailor the agenda for the specific retrospective moment and context.