The Pre-Mortem Activity is great in preparing for an upcoming release or challenge. With a different perspective, the activity guides participants to talk about all that could go wrong. Then, the conversation switches to a mitigation and action plan.
Running the activity:
- Draw the pre-mortem canvas with the main topic for discussion: what will go wrong? How will this end in disaster?
- Ask participants to individually write down risks and concerns.
- Coordinate participants to add their notes to the canvas.
- Add a new theme color for mitigation and ask participants to write down notes related to how to mitigate the risks and concerns.
- Discuss with the group and make a plan of action.
It is common for teams to do a post-mortem activity after something goes wrong. But it is much better to avoid anything from going wrong in the first place. This activity brings structure to think about and prepare for possible problems.
Remote-team advice: This activity works well for remote teams. Use a remote board of your choice.