Friday, 31 August 2012

Don't meet to dump a lot, but to solve something

I have noticed that every Thursday, when I go home, I am restless.
Not a good restless tho'. My right and left sides of the brain are in a constant wrestling mode and none of them wins until around Sunday. That's because by then, I have had enough morning sleep on Saturday (no need to catch an early train) and because usually I meet with my friends and I find a way to relax in their conversations. This makes me forget Thursdays, and makes me start Mondays with a more chillaxed stand.
What is going on on Thursdays? Our Team meeting!
There are 3 choices we have had so far for our team meeting format. The standard one, retrospective one and the lean coffee one.
The standard one
- A long agenda presented to us with updates on what higher levels of management are asking for us, doing on their side and company wide updates. Then a round table where everyone talks about their areas of influence, the teams they work and if they have any issue to raise. And then we all noticed that 1 hour or more has passed and is time to wrap up
The retrospective one
- Anyone familiar with retrospectives knows how this is done. What you don't know is that there are tickets that do not make it on the board because someone already has an answer or even better a solution for it!! No need for discussions.
The Lean coffee one
- Anyone familiar with this style should know how is done. But this style either has the same luck as the retrospective style, or, is left as an option "Time permitted", at the end of a Standard meeting.

This has been going for 6 months.
By now, some issues from 6 months ago have found a way to be solved in a way or another.  Some not. Meanwhile new issues come up but they do not find time to be discussed or solved  on our team meetings. If I go back, I can find a lot of issues un-resolved, outstanding and still a problem for the team.
I decided to create a backlog of all of them!
I went to our online tool and created a project. Send a message to my team and asked them to create tickets. Assign the tickets to someone and move them along as they progress.
This is not our Team's backlog of things to do with the teams we work, of lean/agile concepts we are planning to introduce, of project tracking progress, etc. We have a board for that already.
This is our team's meeting backlog.
This is where we will discuss the issues we are concerned about, our Vision, our plan to roll out a new strategy, etc.
So when we meet, on our Thursdays, in stead of just bringing new issues, feel bad about them, hear contradictory directions, we look at the backlog and pick that 1 ticket that is the most painful point on our immediate future and solve THAT one!
Right now is :Define our role in this organization! It will be a good one :)

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