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How do I create growth items and build a team growth plan?

The key deliverable from a retrospective is the Growth Plan, made up of Growth Items, created by the team to act on the areas that will help the team to grow and to ask for help from Leadership on issues that are outside of the team’s control. The Facilitator and ScrumMaster work together to capture the Growth Items for the team during the retrospective and ensure that the plan is of good quality.

Self-organizing teams function as their own Product Owner for Growth Items. Growth Items should be added to the team's backlog and worked by the team or sent up to Leadership to work. Be sure to fill them out as completely as possible. Just like good user stories, the Growth Items need to be well-defined with clear acceptance criteria. If the team has taken an assessment previously, visit the items on the Team’s Growth Item tab and revisit any incomplete growth items you may want to include in the team’s backlog.

Here are some examples:

Sample Team Growth Item

Sample Organizational Growth Item

Growth Items should incorporate SMART criteria. They should be: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-Bound. Below are examples of not good and good Growth Items. 


Teams should create their top few Team Growth Items (TGIs) as well as their top few Organizational Growth Items (OGIs). Growth Items are usually added within the Assessment Results, the Growth Plan section. You can view all Growth Items created by the Team on the Team’s Growth Item Dashboard

Building the Team Growth Plan

Navigation to the Growth Plan Section

During the retrospective, the team will be working to create their top few Team Growth Items as well as their top few Organizational Growth Items. 

On the Teams Dashboard, you’ll see the familiar view of the teams listed in Swim Lanes View. Click on the team’s avatar to get to that team’s Assessments Dashboard. You will only see the team(s) for which you are the ScrumMaster/Team Admin/Facilitator.

Click on the avatar for the team whose assessment completion details you want to see.


Once there, hover over the assessment you wish to review and click on the Growth Plan chart icon to get to the Growth Plan section.


Once in the Growth Plan section, click on the Add New Item button to get started adding Growth Items.


Add Growth Item Card

When you click on the Add New Item button (Grid View) or the + icon in the Backlog column (Kanban View), you will see a pop up titled Add Growth Plan Item. The required fields on the Growth Item include Title, Status, Priority, Category and Competency Target(s). These fields are important to provide clarity on what the issue is, whether the team has started to work on it, whether it is something that the team can take or is escalating to leadership (Organizational) and how critical the issue is. Choosing a Competency Target will allow you to tie the Growth Item to a specific competency(s) in the assessment and measure the team's growth in this competency(s) over time.


If the Growth Portal is enabled, the team has the option to pull recommendations from the Growth Portal into the Growth Plan. This is helpful if the team is looking for best practices or needs some guidance to get started.

Learn about the different views for the Growth Plan by visiting the How do I see all of my Team's Growth Items article. 

Once your plan is established, the ScrumMaster should Execute the Growth Plan by pulling growth items into the team's regular iterations/sprints.

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