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I have recently started working as a project manager. Before it, I had heard about Agile Methodologies but never put it on practice. But now, Agile has become real for me and so, I’ve been for first time in a “daily SCRUM” or “daily stand-up meeting”. If you have recently read the blog, you will have heard about it.

The “Daily SCRUM” consists of a daily, very short meeting, where the whole team meets for a quick status update. The estimated timebox for doing it is 15 minutes, and it’s highly recommended to meet where the work happens, instead of meeting in a conference room. And do it in front of the “Scrum Taskboard”.

The goal of this meeting is to facilitate the information to flow and the collaboration between the members of the team in order to improve the productivity. So that, it has to be the team who runs the meeting, not the manager (also known as facilitator) and, for me, this is one of the key factors of the daily.

I found this mnemonic for remembering the goals of the daily stand-up meetings. They are GIFTS:

– Good start: the stand-up meeting should give energy, not take it. The daily SCRUM must be crisp and motivating.

– Improvement: it’s not possible to fix problems we don’t know about. So that, an important part of stand-ups is about exposing problems. This allows us to improve by sharing better techniques and ideas to face those problems.

– Focus: it helps to reinforce focus on the right things. It is not just about making an effort but about working on the planned objectives.

– Team: effective teams are built by regularly communicating problems and helping each other to solve them.

– Status: the main questions in the daily stand-up meeting are “How is the work progressing?” and “Is there any thing interesting that the rest of the team should know?”. And we say “the team”, because this is not the scenario for solving concrete tasks that may not have interest for the rest of the assistants

To sum up: 15 minutes of stand-up meeting, better in the working place and at the beginning of the day. Same place, same time. Use it to start the day, providing focus and energy to the team.