Synchronous Communication Sessions (aka Meetings)

Is “Meeting” Really a Dirty Word? Somewhere along the line “meetings” became a dirty word. Scheduled meetings were so much the norm in many of our days that work felt like something we tried to “squeeze in between meetings.” At the morning stand-up oft’ was heard… “Yesterday I was in meetings all day, I didn’t …

Pre-Mortems: Think you’re ready to ship….

…What could possibly go wrong? Here’s an idea: conduct a “pre-mortem” to prepare. The gist of the activity is to consider all that could possibly “go wrong.” Then the conversation switches to a mitigation and action plan. (Maybe the team even does a pre-mortem activity at Lift-Off or at Sprint 0?)

Note and Vote: Effective Collaboration and Teamwork

What is “note and vote”? Note and vote (aka Nominal group technique (NGT)) is a structured method for brainstorming/decision making that encourages contributions from everyone. Why this technique? In a synchronous discussion (aka a meeting) where the goal is problem identification, solution generation, and/or decision making, things can quickly derail …

Bikeshedding, aka Parkinson’s Law of Triviality

What exactly is bike shedding? My VP of Architecture recently brought a renewed vigor to our use of the term “bikeshedding.” The term was coined c. 1957 by C. Northcote Parkinson to illuminate a discovery he made – that groups of people tended to make a futile investment of time and energy on disputes …