Hi everyone, this is my first post (will also jump into the introduction thread in a bit), but this has caught my attention, as in my role of Scrum and Agile trainer I am also doing exercises and games with my classes a lot (people from various backgrounds, in Germany). I have played the Lego4Scrum simulation quite a few times now, and the outcome and levels of engagement are always a bit different, so I can also recommend that. Ballpoint Game as well. Some extraordinary out of the box thinking and teambuilding can happen in those, and it feels like a privilege to be allowed to observe them. What I also like about both these exercises is that people tend to play out their personal strengths, and as long as it helps the group grow, I think that’s a great thing, as uniformity is boring after all…
I like the paper plane suggestion in this thread, especially the part where you realize you have just been doing things the old way without questioning it, although I was wondering how much paper plane building skills that requires? What if people feel uncomfortable folding paper planes or have little experience with it (such as me?)
As for my own sessions, I use the exercise White Elephant Sizing for giving people a feeling for relative sizing and estimation (with household chores and starting with S-M-L columns, later for more granularity also XS and XL; I introduce Fibonacci only later for Lego4Scrum); and I use Hopes & Concerns as well as a Pre-Mortem format for demonstrating some Retrospective formats. What are my own hopes & concerns for this workshop / if applicable for my upcoming certification exam / for applying Agile approaches in my actual environment? If for the workshop, it can be done twice, once in the beginning and later revisited. For Pre-Mortem I use Brexit as a project that we assumed has been finished and has failed, two years from now What could possibly have gone wrong? For bigger groups this can be done once from the EU and once from the UK perspective. Leaving politics out of it, we’re not asking whether it’s right or wrong, we’re just doing worst case scenario risk evaluation, and it always leads to very interesting discussions.
I have used the Spaghetti & Marshmallow Challenge, but one caveat for me was the fact that it seemed like a waste of food, as in, you don’t play with food, you know. Huge amounts of Spaghetti were thrown in the trash before I could collect them again, and that felt bad. How do you guys deal with that?
Another observation of mine is that doing so many things with a class plus teaching them also the theory and basics can be tiresome for them. I’ve found that they need also a fair amount of breaks where they can discuss and breathe a bit. Plus exercises with real-life projects they’re working on. When they can discuss the upsides and potential challenges of using Agile practices for them, some powerful conversations potentially develop. This depends also a bit on whether the focus of a training is certification preparation or simply familiarizing with new tools & techniques / introduction to the world of Agile thinking… In some cases I’m still on a journey to find the right rhythm here myself.