I work 12+ years in IT industry. Started as Junior Software Developer and grow to senior management position in my company. During this time I participated in thousands of meetings. All these meetings formed some feedback for me and here I want to share some input and my feeling about the procedure called meeting.
In IT industry and not only there people have huge amount of meetings. Usually the more higher your position is ,the more meetings you have. Sometimes you can feel that you work in a "meeting industry", not IT or any other. One meeting goes after another and there is no stop for this. During my career I worked as part of different companies and on big variety of projects. Everywhere we had meetings, but only few times I felt that meetings that we have are properly organized and I feel comfortable myself with my schedule. 60% of meetings that I had could be avoided. You'll ask me why I participate in those meetings? The answer is that I'm not the biggest boss and I have my chiefs and rules that I should follow. I hope that meetings that are under my responsibility are well organized and optimized. Following I'm trying to share my experience about meetings and want to highlight factors that you should take into account when you organize your schedule:
• If meeting is iterative, you repeat it periodically, you must make sure that each meeting finishes with some output as action items for people. You need to start each new meeting with checking these action items. Meeting must generate some real output and action items done after the meeting. In other words if someone just come to meeting, sit on it and doesn’t do any real work after this meeting it means he shouldn't participate.
• You need to control your meeting time. If you can do things during 30 minutes, but you stretch them to place in 1 hour because you scheduled for that time, this is very bed. People feel
boring on those meetings and such discussions are not efficient. One additional thing here is that you need to be honest and if you feel that you finished meeting in 5 minutes you should end it and not sit scheduled interval till the end.
• If possible, try to make everyone who participates in meeting to come prepared and not only listen. Every participant must have his own time to speak
• If you feel uncomfortable with meeting, it makes you stress, etc. Try to cancel or change it
• If you created the meeting, make sure you work on it and prepare before it. Don't do things just for fun and waste your own and coworkers time
• If you create reoccurrence meeting make sure that time between 2 meetings is properly selected. If you can stay with biweekly meetings, don't make them weekly
• Make sure that you have less than 50% of your work time for meetings unless you're professional negotiator
I see a lot of meetings about nothing or meetings without results around me. We all know that Agile with its daily updates is a trend now. People try to be Agile because everyone around asks for it and tells to you I'm Agile already. Customers, partners, clients, etc. everyone asks this question when doing business with you. They may not ask about your technical experience or results, but for sure they will ask if your team can work in Agile mode . I see that big amount of organization make Azure decoration for their processes, but they don’t really Agile. Anyway this is a topic of another discussion. Here I would like to concentrate on one of the most problematic things for me in Agile . This is a daily meeting. Daily sync is good, but sometimes it is not efficient and must be changed somehow. Few things that I don't like in daily meetings:
• People got use to participate on it
• Participants don't prepare for meeting
• People are not attentive enough, they are not concentrated on daily meetings
• Sometimes people work on some activity for several days, even weeks and I see them uncomfortable telling same things on daily meeting for this long time
• Inside daily meetings I see that mostly nobody really likes them
To make daily meetings in Agile efficient, Scrum Master, Technical Leader, Project Manager should do a lot of work and organize them efficiently and make people motivated. Meetings is a hard work as well as a technical work or any other. If you organized meeting, be ready to drive it, prepare for it and make sure it gives real impact to your work. Positive impact, I mean.
modified 24-Feb-16 10:02am.
Last Visit: 31-Dec-99 19:00 Last Update: 2-Dec-21 7:05