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5 activities that can improve your remote sessions

This is the fifth post in a blog series about keeping the work efficient while working remote.

Performing activities like retrospectives and sprint plannings remotely can be challenging. But it can also be an opportunity for you to improve them, and at the same time strengthen your team spirit. It’s all about how you perform them. Now, working remotely will limit your options in some ways, but it will enhance them in others. If you find ways to utilise the digital aspect of your work space, you have gained a lot. Here are some activities that I’ve found are suited very well for being performed remotely.

Start with emojis

Start the session by letting everyone choose an emoji that represents how they feel about the previous sprint. Emojis work surprisingly well as discussion initiators and with this approach, everyone gets involved and will probably get a laugh along the way.

Share your strengths

Utilise the digital space and add another column to your retrospective board with the title “My favourite strength”. Now everyone can share one of their strengths at the workplace. Are you structured, energetic or creative? Not only do you get to boost yourself by talking about something you’re good at, you also get to know more about your teammates strengths.

Vote for topics

There are online retrospective boards, like funretro, that let you cast votes on topics that’s been brought up during the session. Decide on how many votes each person should get, about five should be enough. This will help you prioritise what you should focus on for coming sprints and at the same time allow you to get a sense of what the team as a whole considers important.

Follow up

Document the topics with the most votes and assign one or more persons that will be responsible for taking action during the next sprint. Try out tools where you can tag the responsible so they have their own retrospective backlog. This way you enhance the feeling that all of you are contributing.

Name your sprints!

Let the team decide a category for your names. Will it be minerals, flowers or maybe Norwegian rivers? This is a fun way to create a theme and you decide how creative you want to get. Use background images, drop a small trivia during stand-up etc.

Feel free to reach out if you want to discuss any of these activities or if you have suggestions of your own. How you perform activities remotely can make a big difference!

Julius Larsson

Consultant at Digitalent

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