Remote Academy
8 min read

Confused about Sprint Reviews and Retrospectives? We Got You!

Published on
April 17, 2024
Phoenix Baker
Product Manager
Lana Steiner
Product Designer
Drew Cano
Frontend Engineer
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If you think about it, many inventions meant to improve human lives turn out to be somehow an uphill battle and even a source of controversy.

An extreme example could be democracy. A lesser radical example is the scrum methodology.

Mastering the art of scrum ceremonies requires time and skill. Yet, the method was created as a way to launch projects efficiently and sustainably.

It's not only about taking a project to the finish line but the entire team too. In other words, scrum ceremonies are a way to build a cross-functional and collaborative framework.

Implementing these mechanisms into your company's workflow is not immediate. Each project manager or product owner needs to figure out the correct pace for their business.

Getting the fundamentals right could be a good way to start.

There are four types of scrum ceremonies

  • Sprint Planning
  • Daily Scrum
  • Sprint Review
  • Sprint Retrospective

These could be resumed in two chapters. The first one (made up by Sprint Planning and Daily Scrum) is the building process, in which the team sets up the steps to be followed to shape the product backlog.

For these methodologies to occur, the development team and product owner must be in tune with what the client and business, in general, are expecting of the final output.

Sprint Reviews and Sprint Retrospectives tend to get mixed up, mainly because their purpose is similar. This second chapter of scrum ceremonies is set to inspect results and analyze reviews given by the clients.

Today we’ll confuse on the second chapter. Continue reading to understand the main difference between the two ceremonies.

What’s a Sprint Review?

When you’re watching a football (soccer 🤔) match on television, you’ll sometimes notice an individual starting at the match in total focus, and sometimes despair.

This is the technical director, and their job is to constantly check on the match's progress and plan how they can improve the team’s strategy.

In most matches, there's halftime for the teams to rest and reflect on the progress and possible ways to improve in the second half.

Here’s when the technical director gives feedback and instructions on the progress of the team.

The same could be applied to sprint reviews. Once the product backlog is delivered, the team must prove that they’re focused on the user experience and business value.

Now, during the sprint retrospective is time to prepare for the next project, reflect on the coworker’s performance and propose strategies that will lead the company to better results!

What’s a Sprint Retrospective?

A sprint retrospective is a meeting held after the sprint review and before the next sprint planning, according to the Scrum Guide.

But what’s the objective of this meeting, if there’s already the sprint review? The main purpose of a sprint review is to avoid making the same mistakes as in the current sprint. In other words, the team collects feedback and reviews which parts went good and which others need extra work.

It’s a highly reflective meeting, so workers are expected to be open to constructive feedback and willing to do better next time.

There are creative ways to replace a possibly boring meeting with a highly enriching retrospective exercise.

At the end of the day, Scrum methods aim for efficiency, and there’s no efficiency without improvement.

So, if you are looking to improve your sprint retrospective exercises, try using DailyBot. It allows you to automate written sprint retrospectives by sending questions and creating a report with all the answers, so you know where’s the right direction.

In a nutshell, what is the difference between a sprint review and a retrospective?

A Sprint Review is giving a demo of the project developed during the sprint. The team demonstrates the product in a live case scenario and explains the steps taken to get to the final result. Then, the stakeholders give feedback on possible improvements or new features to develop in the following sprint.

A Sprint Retrospective is a group meeting to identify points of improvement and recognition.

Both agile ceremonies can be highly productive, improve teamwork and be highly effective with the right tools. DailyBot, for instance, allows you to send automated written meetings, check on the team’s progress and create a friendly feedback process.

Continue Reading

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