In the old days of sticky notes and whiteboards, a scrum master or product owner would be left with the burden of finding an interesting and engaging retrospective template or retrospective game for the team. Parabol takes that burden away with built-in retrospective templates.
If you can't find any retrospective ideas that are right for your team, Parabol lets you create your own. Adapt an existing retrospective template or create an entirely new one. Now you'll never struggle to find a good idea for your next agile retrospective.
Parabol gives you have the option to start your meeting with an online icebreaker. This helps to get everyone warmed up and ready to give feedback in your retrospective session and is especially important in a remote retrospective.
If you're running a remote retro with distributed scrum teams, icebreakers are important for helping everyone feel safe, energized and engaged in the meeting. So regardless of what retrospective technique you choose, an icebreaker is a sure-fire way to make sure your remote team are ready to discuss topics openly together
Great retrospectives happen when team members freely offer their feedback to one another. Unlike with an online whiteboard or other retrospective tools, feedback in Parabol is anonymous.
Team members can see colleagues writing, but the text is only revealed when everyone has finished adding reflections. Keeping reflections anonymous empowers team members to share more and encourages greater diversity of feedback, so you get a more complete picture of what themes are most important to your agile team.
Whether you have a remote team, distributed team or are co-located in the same office, Parabol's free online retrospective tool can help you run a great remote retrospective.
In real-time, you can synchronously go through each phase of the sprint retrospective, and even set a timer to keep your meeting on track.
Or run it asynchronously by setting a time limit for your team to add reflections, and even send a Slack notification to let your team know how long they have to add feedback. That means you can save your precious meeting time for active discussion.
Continuous improvement is the goal of retrospective meetings. But to make it a reality you often need to have difficult conversations with your team.
Unlike other online retrospective tools, Parabol guides you through a structured conversation that helps you keep the team focus and set clear next steps.
Agile teams can benefit from Parabol's structured approach no matter what retrospective format they select.
Traditionally, after gathering reflections, facilitators review the retrospective board and group everyone's input into topics. When its only the scrum master, product owner, agile coach or other facilitator spotting patterns the team can become disengaged.
In Parabol the whole team can participate in grouping and ungrouping reflections. This multiplayer drag-and-drop feature allows everyone to address concerns, discuss subtle differences, and overall make sure their voice is heard. It gives every Scrum team member a chance to frame the discussion.
Once you've identified themes, team members vote on which topics matter most to them. By default, everyone has five votes and can vote up to three times on one issue. Facilitators can customize these settings to fit their team's needs for each sprint retrospective meeting.
Like adding reflections, voting is anonymous in Parabol. That means the loudest or highest-paid person won't sway the perspective of the team, so you can see what matters most to the group.
With the top themes decided, Parabol's online retrospective tool guides your team through each theme and the reflections that led to it. This guided discussion lets you drill deeper into each topic, and determine what actions you want to take away from your retrospective into your next sprint. Parabol's online tool gives you a clear and structured route to achieving continuous improvement.
Parabol organizes discussions based on which topic got the most votes. You and your team can choose to go through all the topics, set an amount of time per topic, or pick the top themes - Parabol even lets you rearrange them and tackle them in any order you wish.
Once you end your agile retrospective, Parabol's retro tool automatically sends all team members a detailed meeting summary. The email summary includes the number of reflections, topics, and tasks that came out of the meeting, who participated, and what takeaway tasks each participant owns.
The summary also goes out to team members who missed the meeting, keeping everyone in-sync, even when it's async.
You can share the summary with others across the organization, or export your learnings as CSV to analyze trends, upload them into another tool, or share with another group.
After the sprint retro, most teams need to jump right into working on the next set of deliverables. Luckily, you don't need to jump between tools to bring the learnings from your Scrum retrospective into the place where you do work day-to-day: you can add takeaway tasks or user stories directly from Parabol into Atlassian Jira or GitHub.
You can always come back to Parabol to see what came out of your past project or agile retrospective.
Each team has a dashboard with the tasks that came out of previous retrospectives and meetings, and each team member has an individual dashboard for all the tasks they own. That lets team leaders keep track of how their scrum or project team is progressing, and team members stay personally accountable for their tasks.
Even if work is being done in a variety of other tools, you can use this central hub of meeting takeaways to make sure you're continuing to check back on what you've learned and continuously improving.