Happiness Index – Way to measure

What is Team Happiness Index ?

The Happiness Index used to visualize team’s emotions, which intern help teams and management to improve their happiness.

The technique is quite simple, does not require any special occasion to exercise but I strongly suggest running this for every Sprint with-in retrospective meeting. This exercise tries to capture emotions faced by the team within the sprint and understand when and how the issues appeared.

Happiness Index is suitable for any team; it does not require any specific level of maturity.

Always use morale indicators to rate overall Team Happiness Index instead of asking happy or unhappy a person in a team. Here I’m using seven morale indicators which are going to be input to drive the Team Happiness Index.

How to do it ? Team Happiness exercise

This exercise is done as part of every retrospective meeting, the meeting begins with exercise and retro discussion follows

Step-1: Ensure everyone joins the meeting including members working remotely; Scrum Master will anchor whole process; PO and BA will be silent observers.

Note: If Scrum Master is new to this exercise, Agile Coach will anchor, so that SM will conduct subsequent exercises.

Step-2: SM quickly run’s Team Morale indicators details for which members provides inputs; and provides Post-it’s for all members (remote members provide inputs through private chat with Scrum Master). SM will ask each member to write their name on top of post-it.

Step-3: Now SM will ask each member to rate on scale 1(low) to 5(high) for first Indicator (e.g. “Fun at Work”); SM specifies not to cheat! Or share! this is individual input. When everyone confirms they have done the rating for first Indicator, SM will continue with another Indicator.

The Team Happiness INDEX ratings

5 = Super-happy! No change is required !

4 = Reasonably happy, but there are some things that need to be fixed.

3 = Just OK !!, there are many things that need to be fixed.

2 = Not feeling so good about this right now.

1 = Things are not changed sprint on sprint and don’t feel, it will change any time soon

Note: Scrum Master keep talking about the Indicator while members ready to rate, helps members sort their focus on specific Indicator and gives clarity on the boundaries on each indicator.

Step-4: SM runs Step-4 for all team morale indicators.

Step-5: Till above step, all ratings are Individual/private, ask members to freeze the ratings, no change to be done further. SM should now ask everyone to share their ratings for each indicator one by one.  

Example: SM asks to show their rating by throw their fingers (remember the scale 1(low) to 5(high)), remote members shares rating in chat session with SM, for everyone’s understanding SM calls-out the ratings, repeats same for all the indicators.

Step-6: Time to collect the post-its (ratings) from everyone, quickly consolidate to find where as a team we stand on each Indicator. Guidance: any rating below 3 should be discussed as part of regular retrospective and action item to be tracked as part of retrospective action tracker.

The average Team Morale Indicators ratings to be tracked and shared part of every sprint report.  

The ‘Team Happiness Index’ to be tracked sprint on sprint and highlight where teams average ratings stand with control levels as shown in below picture.

CategoriesAgile DevOps Scrum

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