The Daily Standup: One step closer to the goal

by on February 26, 2012 · 2 comments

Almost 9:30am. Time for our stand-up. What did I finish yesterday? What do I plan on finishing today? What’s stopping me?

The daily routine of the morning stand-up is so ingrained, I go through the above liturgy without conscious thought. For me, the stand-up provides a focused center for the team, our morning huddle. We look each other in the eyes, see how we’re feeling – we hear in each others’ voices strong commitment or uncertain hesitation. We lean on each other for support and promise ourselves that at the end of the day we will be one step closer to the goal.

I recently spiced up our daily by introducing a medicine ball as a speaking token. This token does several things:

  • while holding it, you go through the 3 responses quicker (the thing weighs over 12 lbs!)
  • you know how heavy that ball is, so you let your fellow devs’ report their status w/o interrupting
  • it’s a ball – it’s fun!

I got the idea after reading an excellent Wall Street Journal article on the subject “More Meetings Are Stand-Up Jobs”. Check it out – you’ll find several other ideas on how to break up the monotony of your daily.

Remember that the daily stand-up isn’t just another meeting. It’s your team huddle. It’s your commitment to getting a step closer to your team’s goal.

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