Fun Fact, I went with friends a few nights ago and two of them used to get into heated arguments about random topics. So when we drove, I explained the definition of employment contracts and explained how their behaviour concerned everyone else, we laughed, but we agreed, “no heated debates about friendly excursions”. It worked! There was no way out as they would agree on this! 😉 I hope you have found this overview of teamwork agreements. If you have any questions, comments or even arguments against them, I would like to hear them. On the other hand, I saw teams hanging on a wire and barely hitting their targets, because the team members couldn`t see them attacking the whole thing and not being invested. Fortunately, there is one way to solve this problem: the teamwork agreement. Work agreements describe positive behaviours that are fundamental but often not automatically demonstrated in team processes. An agreement could be, for example: “We all agree to participate fully.” Agreements are the group`s instrument of power. The elements of the labour agreement should be made public throughout the team process. These agreements are drawn up by teams and scrumMaster facilitates the meeting, and they are created/verified preferably during the Sprint 0 of each publication. Teamwork agreements should describe how team members work together to create a positive productive process. For each team member, the only way to do that is to add their two cents to the development of these policies.
The views of all members are important and inclusion is the glue that keeps the agreement in common. 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. 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! Let`s start with the definition: work agreements are standards or guidelines developed by a team to improve their interactions for superior performance and create a common language. In practice, these agreements define the expectations of groups, define paths of cooperation and create the atmosphere necessary for sensitive and psychologically safe work. Work agreements are often used in the Agile context, but can be used by any team. Through the work agreement process, teams are given an increased awareness of the interaction between individuals. An agile teamwork agreement is essentially a document listing a team`s standards using instructions such as “We appreciate asynchronous communication in a long form on short and ambiguous messages.” These documents are a way to make implicit agreements and make them explicit so that the team can stay aligned for the duration of the project.
This can be a particularly useful tool when a new team turns and normalizes.