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Psychological Safety

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Have you tried silent grouping?

David Horowitz

With the new rollout of collaborative grouping launching last week (yay! 🎉), we thought this would be the perfect time to share an exciting new way to facilitate the grouping phase that levels the playing field for your team’s introverts.

**Insert silent grouping here**

Silent grouping is a facilitation technique that allows the grouping phase to happen...well...silently. 🤫 This gives introverts an opportunity to anonymously contribute their feedback, in a way that is not so intimidating to them.

Here’s how to utilize silent grouping in your next team retro:

Step 1: Announce that you’ll be using silent grouping, explain how it works, and give an overview of benefits.
Step 2: Ask everyone to please remain quiet and / or mute their microphone.
Step 3: Begin dragging and dropping cards as usual. Upon disagreement of a card’s placement, team members should move the card to where they think it belongs.
Step 4: Note where cards are being shuffled back and forth; this conveys disagreement. That’s okay! If consensus truly cannot be achieved, feel free to leave the card separate from the grouped cards. This likely will not be a regular occurrence.  
Step 5: Move onto the Dot Voting phase as normal!

What’s unique about silent grouping is that it enables your team to effectively communicate with one another without the need to speak up verbally.

To learn more about getting the introverts on your team to participate in retros, check out our latest blog post.

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