Celebrate light and welcome good fortune with this festive retro
What is a Diwali retrospective?
During Diwali, millions of people clean their homes, light small oil lamps, and create vibrant Rangoli artworks to welcome the goddess Lakshmi and celebrate good fortune, joy, and prosperity.
Celebrated across the world by Hindus, Sikhs, and Jains during the lunisolar month of Kartika, Diwali – also known as Deepavali – is a festival of lights, all about the triumph of good over evil.
The lamps, or diyas, transform the earthly substance of oil into warmth and light, so they’re a beautiful metaphor for regeneration and new beginnings. They’re often accompanied by firecrackers, amazing food, and plenty of time spent with friends and family.
And not only is the Diwali festival a major winter event, it marks the beginning of India’s fiscal year! That makes it an especially apt time for scrum teams to check in and celebrate with a Diwali-themed retro.
What are the Diwali retrospective prompts?
Here are the prompts you’ll need to run a Diwali-themed retrospective with your team. We wish you a Diwali that brings health, happiness, and prosperity to your closest people (and your team!).
What beautiful lights are guiding your team forward? What milestones will indicate that you’re on the right track?
In this retrospective, diyas are the lights in the darkness, making your pathway towards key objectives a little more clear.
These could be super-specific, like KPIs or OKRs your team has already agreed on. But they could also be more personal, or subjective – like a state of mind or habit that helps you do your best work.
Example: I love the video tutorials Rachel has been recording to help people with what’s coming up each week.
Often placed at an entrance or doorway, these beautiful artworks use colorful materials like sand, limestone, and flower petals to invite wealth and good fortune into the home.
What practices and processes are bringing joy and positivity to your workday? What makes things smoother, easier, and sets you up for success?
Example: Our new project management tool makes staying on top of things feel like a breeze! It’s so easy to see exactly where things are at with the project, any time.
On the third day of every Diwali, families clean their homes until they sparkle. They welcome Lakshmi – the goddess of wealth – with beautiful offerings and decorations.
This Diwali, how can your team embrace the spirit of cleanliness in the workplace? What can you clean up, tidy, and maybe even let go of to make way for a wave of beauty and prosperity?
Example: I think we should clean up how we run our team retrospectives. The improvised, DIY feel is fun, but sometimes it doesn’t feel efficient. Perhaps we could try an online retrospective tool instead?
Ravana is the demon king, and commander of the malevolent demigod Rakshasas.
What’s the Ravana your team is faced with? What demons, or problems, are cursing you and holding you back?
Make your Ravana a situation or obstacle, rather than an actual person. Calling one of your colleagues, partners, or teammates a demon king isn’t exactly constructive criticism!
Example: The learning curve with react.js is intense. I feel like I’m a beginner coder again, and it’s pretty demoralizing.
When to do a Diwali retrospective
Just before the Diwali holidays! This retrospective template was made just for the Diwali festive season, a time of light and the triumph of beauty and prosperity in darkness.
But because Diwali happens towards the end of the calendar year, it’s a great time to look at the big picture. Use this sprint retrospective idea on any of the days of Diwali or in the run up to the holiday. It’s a perfect way to think about how far you’ve come and make long-term plans to do even better.
How to run a Diwali retrospective in Parabol
First of all, jump into Parabol. If you’re a Scrum Master or the team meeting facilitator hit the vibrant Add New Meeting button.
Here you can choose a “retrospective” meeting from the carousel and choose whether you want the input to be anonymous or non-anonymous. Now it’s time to generate insights about your last sprint!
Select the Diwali retrospective template
Jump into Parabol and select Retro Meeting with the arrows, then use the dropdown to select the Diwali retrospective template. This is where you’ll find Parabol’s library of 40+ retrospective ideas. You can always customize your Diwali retrospective if you want to add a specific column for kudos, or anything else!
Start your Diwali retro with an Icebreaker
Parabol retrospectives start with an optional icebreaker question! f you’re doing an icebreaker, you’ll have a random question to answer. You can refresh it if you want another option, and of course you can create your own if you want.
🪔 Perhaps ask team members what their favorite part of Diwali is? Or if they have any special Diwali memories that have stuck with them over the years.
Reflect on your last sprint with the Diwali retro prompts!
After the icebreaker you’ll move on to the reflect stage. This is where your team will do all their ideation and brainstorm in silence using the prompts above. All reflections are kept anonymous at this stage to prevent groupthink.
All Parabol sprint retrospectives can be run synchronously or asynchronously. Functionalities such as the timer, voting and multiplayer grouping help you make your retrospective exercise a success and make facilitation easier.
Discuss and set action items for continuous improvement
Team members can all leave comments together on topics you’ve chosen. Parabol has a discussion thread just for that!
After the reflect phase, you’ll group reflections into topics, vote on issues to discuss, talk about the most voted on items, and set action items for each process improvement so you can make it a reality.
Parabol will send a summary of the retro when you’re done so nobody needs to take notes. You can also send any action items out to Jira or GitHub where your tasks belong!
If you like this template, you might also like our other seasonal retrospectives – including the Halloween retrospective, Thanksgiving retrospective, or Christmas retrospective.