Agile Software Development

Envisioning a Perfect Daily Standup

Most daily standups feature the same few key ingredients, with an extra gimmick or adaptation in place here and there. It helps to swap ideas about those gimmicks and adaptations from time to time though, for the sake of keeping things fresh. In a post at his blog, James Mensch discusses some of his thoughts on how to build a “perfect” daily standup.

Doing Well in the Standings

In addition to the standard “what I did/what I’ll do/impediments” subjects that are covered in every standup, Mensch suggests adding a fourth subject: “What I’ve learned.” He believes that introducing this subject challenges teams to stay mindful about what they are doing and what they are learning. And that very well may be the case, but honestly, I could just as easily see it backfiring—I could see people getting resentful day to day, thinking things to themselves like, “Man, I dunno. I can’t learn some big new revelation every day.”

But the remainder of Mensch’s tips are pretty solid. He suggests a code of conduct, with simple rules like “Stay on topic,” “Set a time limit per person,” and “Don’t interrupt.” Even more broadly than that, you should attempt to practice empathy within the team, and celebrate people’s accomplishments. The goal is to be transparent and keep work moving forward, and that will happen most smoothly when people are working together thoughtfully.

For further elaboration, you can view Mensch’s post here:

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