Sharks and Chimps
This is based on a technique described in Radical Candor, and is designed to facilitate communication and openness about risk-taking. (In Radical Candor it's described as Tigers and Monkeys I believe). Teammates nominate 1) Each other as "sharks" -- for particularly effective actions during the sprint. They explain how their teammate kicked ass or helped them during the week. Everyone votes on who was the best shark, and the winner gets to keep a stuffed animal shark on their desk during the next sprint. 2) Themselves as "chimps" -- where they describe their biggest mistake or learning moment during the sprint. Everyone votes on who had the best story about screwing up and what they learned from it. The winner gets a financial prize ($20, in our case) and a stuff animal chimp to sit on their desk during the next sprint. The primary goal is to make failure, and the discussion of it, a positive thing rather than something to hide. I find that the exercise is fun, and also tends to bring out all the same information that other good retro formats surface.
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