Goals and Principles of the Sprint Retrospective Meeting

You may have a question as to when a sprint retrospective meeting will be held. Each sprint concludes with a sprint review meeting and a sprint retrospective meeting. Product Owner, ScrumMaster, and the entire development team participate in a time-boxed, three-hour meeting. In this article on universal agile, we’ll get to know about the goals and principles of sprint retrospective meetings.

What was discussed at the Retrospective Meeting?

The development team will discuss both what went well and poorly during the most recent sprint during the sprint retrospective meeting. Each team member should start this discussion by responding to those two questions as they apply to him or her. The replies should be summarized by the scrum master. 

ScrumMaster’s job is to assist the development team in coming up with new ways to make the scrum process work for them in forthcoming sprints, not to offer explanations for why things went wrong.

The purpose of the retrospective is for the team members to talk among themselves about how the work went during the most recent sprint to find better approaches to accomplish the project’s objectives. This implies that the team should also discuss its internal procedures.

It is crucial to become aware of and address issues as they arise. The process of getting better from sprint to sprint is ongoing. It is too late to discover how a project may have been completed more effectively once it has been completed. Even though the project might have been finished, it most certainly finished late and beyond budget.

What a football team seeks to do in its Monday morning tape review of the weekend game is a pretty excellent example of what you aim to accomplish in a retrospective meeting. The team analyzed how it could have performed or defended better whether it won or lost. 

What specifically do they as a team or individual need to change or adjust to having a better chance of winning the following week?

Product Backlog Maintenance

There should be additions, modifications, and deletions made to the product backlog as a result of the conversations and interactions in the sprint review and retrospective meetings. Normally, any new items added to the product backlog will be high-priority tasks to be completed in the upcoming sprint. 

There might be tasks that, for one reason or another, were supposed to be finished during the previous sprint but weren’t, or they might be tasks that have been classified as nonfunctional, meaning that they are necessary for the success of the project as a whole but won’t directly result in a new good or service.

What do Sprint Retrospective Meetings serve?

The main goal of the Sprint Retrospective meetings is to come up with a strategy that will improve the productivity and standard of the Product Increment created during the upcoming Sprint sessions. 

The purpose of the Sprint Retrospective meetings is for the team to discuss what they did well during the previous Sprint and whether they should continue doing so during the upcoming Sprint. You will learn more about the sprint retrospective by taking scrum master certification.

The team also discovered additional intriguing innovations that might improve the product and determine whether they belong in the following Sprint: Scrum values for inspecting and adapting are essential to Sprint Retrospective sessions and aid the team in making each succeeding Sprint more engaging, fruitful, inventive, and pleasurable for the entire Scrum Team.

What activities will take place at the sprint retrospective meeting?

The following activities occur at the sprint retrospective meetings:

Based on the Product Increment that was provided during the previous Sprint, the Scrum Team assesses the team’s progress. Individuals, processes, interactions, tools, and finally the definition of done for each Product Increment are the basis for the evaluation.

Depending on the elements’ domain, different elements may be examined, and the elements’ origins are also investigated.

The team explains the obstacles they encountered during the process, as well as the solutions they came up with to deal with those issues. They also made note of any issues that were not able to be fixed during the previous Sprint.

The team also determines the best ways to boost productivity, and the suggestion with the biggest impact is put into practice right away so that results may be noticed as soon as possible.

Sprint Retrospective is a time-boxed meeting with a maximum duration of three hours for a month-long Sprint and shorter for shorter ones, thus finishing the Sprint.

How is Sprint Retrospective conducted?

The way different organizations conduct Sprint Retrospective sessions may vary. The majority of the meeting’s activities, however, continue to be the same. Therefore, to conduct a successful Sprint Retrospective, many businesses adhere to the five-step cycle. As follows:

Step 1: Preparing the scene

The facilitator must prepare the meeting space before the Sprint Retrospective meeting begins. This means that a specific objective needs to be established for the meeting to give it a focus and prevent it from veering off course. 

The facilitator must allow time for attendees to “arrive” at the meeting and settle in during this step as well. One of the greatest ways to begin any type of meeting is to let everyone know about it in advance so they can show up.

Step 2: Compiling the information

The purpose of the meeting and its objectives should always be discussed before the meeting starts. To avoid confusion at the Sprint Retrospective meeting, the facilitator must also assist everyone in recalling the last Sprint that they worked on. One of the greatest ways to approach step two of Sprint Retrospective is by creating a shared pool of information about Sprint. 

Since everyone has a unique perspective on Sprint and observes it from a different angle, it is crucial to focus everyone’s points of view on a single issue so that everyone can follow the discussion.

Step 3: Developing Insights

We reflect on why things happened the way they did at this stage now that everyone is aware of what they did in the previous Sprint. Identify the cause of a specific task’s success or failure during the previous Sprint. 

We may use these patterns in the upcoming Sprint to develop the Product Increment effectively by recognizing various patterns that occur and either lead to success or failure. As a result, this stage is all about gaining insights into everything that occurred during the previous Sprint to see the wider picture.

Step 4: Making an action decision

The next stage of the meeting is to choose the issues that need to be worked on so that the process of product development progresses smoothly in the next Sprint after everyone has thought back on the things they have accomplished in the previous Sprint and addressed the problems and failures. The primary goal of the Sprint Retrospective meeting would be to create a detailed action plan for how you will handle the issues.

Step 5: Concluding the Retrospective

The final activity of the Sprint Retrospective should be to address any questions the Development Team may have about the proposed course of action. The meeting’s facilitator should never forget to acknowledge the team’s efforts to be upbeat in approaching the meeting’s conclusion. 

Additionally, after the event, a clear recap of what was discussed in the meeting and a clear explanation of how retrospectives can be improved should be listed so that the members can grasp the outcomes of the entire meeting.


Sprint Retrospectives are usually those meetings where the entire Scrum Team may gain insight. For everyone to grasp what went wrong in the previous Sprint and to appreciate the features and tasks that were successful during that Sprint, it should be handled in a lighthearted manner. 

One of the greatest strategies to conduct a successful Sprint Retrospective meeting is to keep the Sprint Retrospective straightforward and understandable. A good Sprint Retrospective can be conducted by following the procedures and successfully implementing the tips, which will result in a fruitful meeting.

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