The Harvard Business Review cites another study by the Boston Consulting Group and the WHU-Otto Beisheim School of Management in Germany, which surveyed 80 global software teams and found that they exceeded the joint venture teams. In the next retrospective, I decided to test the water first. I talked about how I met my wife and played our wedding dance video (which proved to be a great success for the Indian teams). Then the SM shared family photos and talked about each of his children and their interests. The PO opened its move from Seattle and the stress that had caused, especially with the packaging and removal of a huge house. One after the other, the team opened up, and when I looked around, people started to intimidate each other and spread their hearts. Some stories made teams sad, some stories made teams happy, but all shared something nearby, and they were expensive, and emotions grew. We partied with a member of the team who beamed with pride and let us know that his daughter had been admitted to a very prestigious university. We cried with another who said that a parent was suffering from an illness and how difficult it was to deal with it.
The team exchanged delicious recipes and enjoyed seeing family photos and hearing the stories behind them. For the first time, feelings were stoked when cultural and distance barriers were torn off. We have all been part of each other`s lives. We all put on a human face. Work agreements are the rules/disciplines/processes that the team is ready to follow, without making themselves more effective and simplistic about the self-administered aspects of the Scrum. These agreements help the team develop a common understanding of what it means to work as a team. This is the story of how I was able to help a team I coached to improve working relationships and work together to achieve better results. While the result of this trip was a series of work agreements that reflect a new way of operating, the story focuses on the team`s journey of self-discovery and self-improvement. Through this trip, the team has gained a better understanding and respect for each other, transcending cultural and geographical boundaries. The next morning, I arrived early, zealously, to finally meet everyone on the team. I had decided to stay in learning mode and understand.
I refused the SM`s invitation to support the team after the fact, and I let it proceed in retrospect, as had always been done. At 8:00 a.m., SM, PO and I gathered in an empty meeting room in our Home Office and the SM connected the Skype link that launched the meeting. The two local engineers were at a distance and chose each other. The Indian team was seated with their supervisor in a unique meeting room in Mumbai. Although we were a screen share, no one else could see anyone else because no one had turned on video cameras.