It’s official…Team Docket is now 100% remote. While we prefer to work together face-to-face, we are joining the many other companies who have decided to pause from office life and welcome the home office and remote meetings with open arms.
This isn’t unfamiliar territory as our headquarters in Indianapolis experiences snow days and other events where we sporadically work offsite and use the tools we have to stay productive. The difference is that we have a planned schedule to do this over several weeks, all at the same time. Goodbye physical whiteboards, impromptu desk conversations, and water cooler chat. Hello, productivity tools!
Let’s take an inside peek at how Docket continues running effective meetings from anywhere.
(Spoiler Alert – We use Docket!)
We keep to a schedule
Whether we have kids, significant others, or our favorite dog Rosie at home with us, keeping a schedule is extremely important for us to work collaboratively and get things done. Some of us are morning people, others are night owls, and there is that one guy that’s a little of both. Having a schedule shows respect and helps everyone plan ahead and coordinate to balance dual responsibilities for work and home.
How we do remote: We continue to rely on our current meeting cadence for our recurring team meetings to provide a semblance of consistency and familiarity as well as to learn progress, identify challenges, and ensure alignment every step of the way. Using Docket Meeting History, we can start each meeting by looking back at the previous meeting to see where we left off and what tasks have been completed so we can be ready to move on together as a team.
We believe caring is preparing (and sharing)
We believe that each meeting is a set amount of time to get something specific done and not just a block of time to see what we can do. In order to determine what needs to get done, we make sure each meeting not only has an agenda but a clear purpose or goal with agenda items that drive towards this.
How we do remote: Using Docket, we rely on our Docket Daily Digest as well as our app’s event panel for a weekly outlook to see which meetings we have not created an agenda for. We create the agendas prior to the meeting using Docket templates and share out each agenda prior to the meeting. (If we don’t, public shaming is totally on the table).
We standup even when we sit down
In the office, we start our day in a daily standup so we can communicate our individual and team project status as well as other top priorities such as immediate customer service needs, items ready for testing or review, and our favorite – items ready for release! With so much going on every day, it is critical for us to capture our progress and be ready to share it with the team.
How we do it remote: We use our Daily Standup template from Docket Templates to conduct the meeting. After the agenda template is distributed the day before, each team member records their items in the standup template so it is ready to discuss the next morning. When the video call concludes through Zoom, the Docket recap is distributed to all team members, including leadership. This is also a great way to keep everyone informed in case someone has to miss the meeting.
We are camera ready
This good looking crew has something serious to share! Their smiles! Working from home may equate to less make-up, hat head, or some little ones running rampant in the background but we turn on our cameras for every meeting. We believe it is critical to our relationships and process that we simulate an in-person work environment and get the most from our conversations.
How we do remote: We make sure every Docket meeting has a Zoom video conferencing call scheduled and then launch and conduct our video call using the Docket + Zoom overlay so we can view our crew, take notes, and assign tasks without having to toggle between screens.
We are Slack-ers
Scheduled meetings help us organize our work into a structured conversation but sometimes you need unstructured conversation too! In the office, it is easy to waltz into an office or desk and share your question or idea but this can also cause disruption. So we rely on Slack chat heavily for quick conversations, questions, and daily quips to have some fun.
How we do remote: When we are remote, Slack is our way of keeping things moving and feeling connected. We greet each other in the morning as a way to check-in and replace the “hello” we would get when we walk in the office. We share documents, advice, and the occasional work meme or GIPHY for fun. And we rely on Docket’s integration with Slack to get notified when there is a new agenda or recap to review.
We ask, then we task
We may be awesome but not all challenges get resolved in each meeting. Many of our meetings are a way for us to discuss challenges, ask questions, and decide on next steps to keep us moving further along. Those next steps become tasks so we can be sure someone will keep running to the finish line.
How we do remote: We log tasks in Docket notes during our Zoom video calls and immediately assign them to a team member with a desired due date. When the Docket recap is distributed after the meeting, each person assigned a task gets a customized version of the recap showing their assigned action items at the top of the recap. They can also see the tasks in their Docket Task Manager as well as on their Daily Digest on the day they are due.
When we aren’t meeting with each other, we are meeting with customers and it is important we give them the same experiences above, especially if they too are remote and desire a scheduled and organized approach. During a time when many of us find ourselves working remotely, it is more important than ever that we use effective meeting strategies to plan, prepare, communicate, and follow up to ensure we all drive towards success. Docket can help.