The brief answer to ”When should my team establish an agile teamwork agreement” is now (if you don`t have one yet). However, the best time to establish these agreements is the first phase of a project, especially if it is a new team. This is the most critical at this point, because the team may have preconceived ideas about how the team will work. I found that it was also a good time for a team to conduct a healthy debate. It breaks that wall early in the life cycle of the project, so the first problem on which they do not disagree in the project is not the first time they have had to discuss among themselves. It is easy to get into projects with new teams, but work agreements create the kind of solid foundation necessary for effective cooperation, especially between people with different backgrounds, assumptions and experiences. As with every frame, it`s important to adapt it to your own needs and culture. When introducing work agreements within your team, consider the most appropriate approach. A work agreement is a short series of policies developed by the team for the team that define the team`s expectations. A well-written agreement should help create and strengthen a clear and shared understanding of all team members about what they recognize as good behaviour and for good communication. It is generally referred to as a single ”work agreement,” but in reality it consists of many individual agreements for each subject or subject. Teams must hold each other to account. People will have differences of opinion and will have to re-examine them.
”In the spirit of transparency and continuous improvement, team members should reconsider employment contracts from time to time and ask, ”Should they be updated?” Don`t let things go too far. First, set the context for working agreements with your team. As a group, you can use whiteboards (physical or digital), adhesion notes, worksheets or flipcharts. Divide groups of more than five people into subgroups. In my experience, it is easier to reach an agreement on small groups first and then put them back together. After a few rounds of proposals, if there is no consensus on a specific point, continue – you are not in a position to reach an agreement in this area at this time. Consider revisiting the issue when employment contracts are discussed next time. Save often and keep in mind that agreements can always be renegotiated, especially when new members join or situations change.
Each new team has a strong dynamic, with individuals preferring a certain mix of behaviors and practices. Respect your uniqueness! Steve begins to ask for proposed agreements in his first priority area: Daily Scrum Start Time. After any possible work agreement, it uses the Decider protocol to quickly examine the possibility of consensus. If there is no immediate consensus, the person who said ”no” to an idea suggests what they see as a better idea.