About the sailboat retrospective template
What is the Sailboat Retrospective?
The sailboat retrospective typically uses the sailing boat representation to guide the teams in visualizing their goals and how to achieve them. It is interestingly a visual approach to executing a retrospective since it requires team members' imaginations. The template allows participants to think out of the box, eventually resulting in creative ideas and solutions.
Traditionally, the sailboat retrospective template was a whiteboard or flip-art with an image of the sailboat and post-its for members to take notes on inputs in every section. However, several online templates can now be used for the sailboat approach with remote meetings and collaborations.
This approach might be new for some, so here are the metaphorical sections of this strategy:
- Island. This will be the destination or your team's final goal. Your team's island does not necessarily have to be a thing; it could be a metric you want to achieve, a list of the team's goals, or even a situation you want your organization to be in.
- Rocks. Elements in this section are potential risks and must be avoided by your team's sailboat. Coral reefs, large stones, pirates, and icebergs can also represent the rocks in this category.
- Anchor. If the rocks represent the external risks, the anchor will be the challenges or issues within the organization. You need to think of the problems within your team that everyone needs to resolve to make the sailing more effective and efficient.
- Wind. The strong wind will lead the sailboat to reach its destination faster. The wind on the sailboat retrospective represents the aspects that can help your team achieve your goals. They can be helpful factors that your team is already aware of or other encouraging elements that your team can have for your future endeavors.
Why is the sailboat retrospective template so effective?
The effectiveness of the sailboat retrospective template depends on how teams utilize symbolism and metaphors in every section of the template. Since teams can use relatable representations for every section, members can easily remember vital strengths and weaknesses. The exercise promotes a no-pressure approach, allowing participants to feel at ease and more engaging without overthinking.
This retrospective also provides continuous improvement since the template challenges teams. It allows them to dig deeper to determine the aspects that help the organization and what's hurting their collaboration, timeline, and project.
How do you format a sailboat retrospective template?
There are several ways to format sailboat retrospective templates, and it will depend on the one utilizing the technique. Here are a few key points to consider in making such a template:
- Not everyone on your team typically knows what this template is all about, so it is best to explain to them first how this method works, including the representations.
- When you connect the visual metaphors to running your project plans, you provide opportunities for every team member to list down constructive feedback and work for future solutions.
- Since every team member must participate in filling out each section of the template, you can give them about ten minutes to reflect on inputs relevant to every section of the sailboat retrospective.
- Team members can now share their reflections in small groups or pairs. Every member can take five minutes to discuss the insights they listed.
- Assign one member who can collate and group similar insights. This allows the team to identify which negative and positive aspects had significant impacts on the project.
- You can sketch your template. Either you use online tools or do it manually. It will be up to your team. Most teams now use online tools as they are much accessible and easy to fill in.
- Now, brainstorm as a team on the critical and significant issues that you must focus on developing and mitigating.
- Finally, discuss within your team the action plans to maintain good behaviors and resolve issues in preparation for your team's following projects.
The benefits of the sailboat retrospective template
The sailboat retrospective templates do not require the team to have any special occasion to do this. Since it is a low-key, fun approach to identifying strengths and weaknesses crucial to future sprints, every member can contribute freely without being pressured to provide inputs. You can always be creative in coming up with interactive representations for your sailboat retrospective using online templates with EdrawMind. Since EdrawMind allows its users to insert stickers, texts, and even images, you indeed have the luxury to create templates that correspond to your team's liking. Suppose your team is working remotely; EdrawMind allows real-time collaboration among members, so you can share individual files or create a group to manage shared files.