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The stand up meeting is becoming more popular all the time, and it’s not hard to understand the reasons why. Far too many meetings take up time for people to gather, time for them to settle in, time to wander off into side discussions and time for them to agree on what conclusion they’ve reached. Sometimes the only conclusion they reach is to have another meeting. With a properly conducted 15 minute stand up meeting, a team can eliminate the time squandering practices that all too often are associated with meetings. The meeting can accomplish what it needs to and get everyone back to work without eating into the productive team members’ valuable time.
What is the Purpose of a Standup Meeting?
There are a number of reasons to hold a stand up meeting, but what they all have in common is the goal of limiting meeting time and returning people to other tasks. A stand up meeting might be a 15 meeting staff meeting set up to efficiently pass information to and among staff members. If a team is using agile methodology, it could be a scrum meeting. Agile stand up ideas can be effectively used in the weekly scrum meeting and the daily team stand up meeting, and the purpose is often to ensure the team is on track to meet the very short term deliverables required in agile methodology.
If it’s a kanban stand up meeting, the purpose will be to storyboard the progression of accomplishments from conception to completion and ensure they’re moving along that path. In lean stand up meetings participants collaborate to generate ideas. Stand up meetings can be conducted for one of these purposes or one of many others. The meeting’s purpose, however, needs to be specific, focused and able to be completed with a few people in a short session.
Any department can benefit from the use of stand up meetings. Whether they’re marketing stand up meetings or the daily stand up meetings manufacturing divisions conduct, they can improve the meeting efficiency of any group. Stand up ideas are available for anyone to take advantage of.
Individual contributors come to appreciate stand up meetings because the meetings are respectful of their time. There are additional benefits as well. Because they can be held daily, they shorten the time in reporting problems and issues. They also increase face to face interaction among team members.
How Does a Standup Meeting Work?
Beside the obvious fact that no one gets to sit down, there are few things that all successful stand up meetings have in common. Stand up meeting best practices insist that the meeting exists for a specific purpose and that it is strongly time-boxed. A 15 minute meeting agenda is typical. There should be a stand up meeting template using a tool like Docket, and everyone needs to be aware of what’s listed within that template so there’s no reason to wander off the topic. Anything extraneous that comes up in a stand up meeting needs to be noted and dealt with at another time. Side issues can’t be allowed to extend the meeting or take it off on a tangent.
A stand up meeting adheres to schedule. If the meeting is a scrum meeting, the team might assign an agile stand up timer to make sure not only that the meeting itself doesn’t run long, but that none of the specific agenda items get more time than they’re allotted. The timer concept is useful for any type of stand up meeting, scrum or otherwise. A meeting tool like Docket has a timer built in so that everyone is aware of how much time is left in the meeting.
All the team members need to be aware of what to say in a stand up meeting and questions to ask in a stand up meeting. These things are prescribed by the agenda, and as the team grows experienced in conducting stand up meetings they get better and better at adhering strictly to the relevant topic.
Stand up meeting ideas might include having each member describe their accomplishments of the past day, their goals for the next day and any obstacles or issues that need to be noted. It’s important that all of the agenda items are taken care of in an efficient and orderly manner, and that there’s a process for dealing with issues so they get properly addressed without prolonging the stand up meeting.
What Not To Do in a Standup Meeting
Not every meeting should be a stand up meeting. All organizations have occasion to do long range planning, to orient employees and to do other tasks that require their staff to withdraw from daily work to address issues. There’s a reason why stand up meeting is bad for these sorts of activities. If you try to shoehorn the wrong type of meeting into a stand up, you’re going to find people saying they hate stand up meetings and stand up meetings are a waste of time.
Like any useful tools, stand up meetings are excellent when used for their intended purpose, and the subject of stand up meeting jokes when they’re misused. In order to avoid wasteful stand up meeting games, there are a few simple practices that everyone must observe.
One is, don’t come unprepared. Every person should know exactly what they need to report and should promptly do so when their turn comes. Also, don’t be wishy washy about the stand up meeting agenda. Stick to it. Don’t ignore the designated timer when they say it’s time to move in. Don’t get sidetracked in issues that aren’t on the agenda. It’s a good idea to assign a recorder who makes note of these issues in a tool like Docket and sees to it that they’re addressed appropriately outside of the stand up meeting.
And don’t be late. You only have 15 minutes and you need to make maximum use of that time. Keep the introductory chit-chat to a minimum. There are better times to socialize with your colleagues.
Don’t allow the meeting to become a complaint session. If a complaint is legitimate, record it as an issue to be addressed elsewhere.
And while it seems like a great idea to make daily scrum fun, you probably want to avoid fun stand up meeting ideas and leave that to a stand up meeting meme after the meeting so that others do not think these sessions as “stand up meetings waste of time” sessions.
If you use the stand up meeting for the right purposes and adhere to the procedures you’ve laid out for it, you won’t be caught up in any of the practices that can render stand up meetings ineffective.
Tips for a Successful Standup Meeting
When management follows the right leadership tips stand up meetings have an excellent chance of accomplishing what they’re intended to accomplish. An important factor is to put in place the planning and controls that make the stand up meeting an efficient and repeatable process. A successful stand up meeting is run by someone who is trained or experienced in conducting stand ups and knows how to use processes and available tools.
There are few things as beneficial as the use of templates from a tool such as Docket to ensure that the right participants are present, the right questions are addressed and the necessary action is taken coming out of the meeting. A daily stand up meeting excel template or daily meeting excel template, for example, can be the overall tool for laying out the project tasks to be addressed in the meeting and capturing the status of each one.
There are tools to ensure all the critical people are invited to the meeting and that they understand what their responsibilities are. Since this information has to go out on a regular basis for ongoing stand up meetings, a daily stand up meeting email template and a daily stand up meeting invite template help make certain that no one important is left off the invite list and that all the invitees understand what is expected of them. A daily scrum meeting email template can be tailored to fit the exact format of whichever scrum meeting is being conducted.
For a scrum meeting, the daily scrum meeting checklist and a daily scrum meeting template excel help the keep the meeting or track. Even if the meeting is not within the agile methodology, a more generic daily stand up meeting template is an important tool to ensure effective running of the meeting.
Lot of organizations have improved their productivity with stand up meetings, but just deciding that you’re going to do stand up doesn’t ensure that results will be the same for you. However, if you think rigorously about what you want to accomplish with stand up meetings and employ the tools and templates that keep those meetings on track, you’ll find that the stand up is an important tool for getting the most out of your meetings.