Crazy idea – let’s drop divorce rate using Agile

It made my month to be able to facilitate agile team chartering for a couple of amazing teams at my work.

What the hell is “team chartering” you ask?

Team chartering is a proven technique in Agile framework for building team alignment, effectiveness and cohesion.

Whenever a team undergoes a major event (team formation, team members joining or leaving etc), the entire team gathers together and holds the chartering meeting (also known as the kick-off meeting). The goal of the meeting is to establish alignment around team’s purpose, clear role definitions and responsibilities, working agreement, communication methods, stakeholders, shared team values and other similar things.



When I first proposed this the devs on my teams were skeptical. “It’s a waste of time, we should be working instead of spending time in meetings” – was the common sentiment. A few of the developers felt this was incredibly childish.


Oh how their tune changed after the chartering! The teams emerged invigorated, excited, and aligned around a crystal clear vision. They soon established themselves as highly effective teams, delivering quickly and delighting their customers. They later recommended this exercise to many other teams.


So one day I was watching a married couple fight over small stuff on TV and I had this crazy idea – what if we required team chartering for MARRIAGES?

Marriage is a team sport after all . 

Imagine couples were required to explicitly discuss and agree (or agree to disagree) on their core values before the were allowed to marry.

Imagine they were required to provide a working agreement detailing out how they will approach conflict, what is an acceptable and unacceptable behavior towards each other and how decisions will be made.

Imagine they were required to discuss and agree upon communication – for example, how would they give and receive feedback?

Imagine they were required to provide a working agreement on how they would handle their money – nest egg, daily expenses, and emergency funds.

Imagine they were required to identify ways in which they would support each other and help each other grow.

Just imagine …. a marriage that starts with clarity and alignment, agreement and commitment via Agile Team Chartering.  And while we are on it – why not apply Agile mindset throughout the marriage? Frequent marriage retrospectives, reflection on how things are going and continuous improvement can’t be a bad thing, right?

What do you think – crazy stupid or crazy we are not doing it?


Team charter images source: