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APS Secret Agent: The Avoider

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It is important to assess the impact of different team behaviours on the outcomes of Sprints. The purpose of Sprint 3 is to investigate this and this activity on your part will help your team see how different dysfunctional team behaviours impact their effectiveness.

Your Scrum Master will not know what’s going on. Part of their role is to figure it out.

– until the Sprint 3 Retrospective
– instructions to follow

This optional task should be performed during Sprint 3 and only be revealed during the Sprint 3 retrospective. Feel free to overact and have fun. If you are uncomfortable then don’t worry, this is optional! You are free to opt out.

Please do not reveal your secret mission until the Sprint 3 Retrospective.

Playing the The Avoider

The Avoider uses the letter of their perceived law in their own defence. “That’s not my job” is the classic Avoider statement. Avoiders often try to appear amiable and willing to participate as a member of a Team but baulk when asked to participate outside their comfort zone.
Examples of Avoider Behavior

  • Responds with, “That’s not my job” when asked to perform an unfamiliar activity
  • Refuses to accept responsibility for his/her own work
  • Uses “I was just doing what I was told” as a response to negative feedback
  • Refuses to accept work that is new or unfamiliar

Typical Effects of The Avoider

  • Team performance is ultimately dragged down due to the Team trying to accommodate the work the Avoider will do without complaint
  • Team members are repeatedly frustrated by the defense techniques of “I am doing what I am supposed to do.”
  • Team does not actually have a all competencies needed to deliver an increment. 

The Sprint 3 Retrospective

At the Sprint 3 Retrospective continue to play the role until rumbled by your Scrum Master! Your mission is a success if you manage to escape detection!

After the Retro we will have a reveal!


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