In general, I don’t find email to be the most effective tool in highly collaborative environments. This is the first in a series of posts on how I lead my team in avoiding email.
1. The daily check-in
Since my team is spread across four timezones it can be challenging to all meet together. Each day at a pre-determined time we have a “virtual stand-up meeting” on Skype.
- The meeting lasts no more than 10 minutes
- Each person covers three questions
- What did you do yesterday?
- What are you planning to do today?
- Are there any barriers in executing your projects?
- We briefly discuss any thing that has come up
- Relevant parties can schedule other meetings if something has arisen that warrants it
Why I like this?
- I don’t need to send emails to get people’s attention. I know I will ‘see’ them each day.
- There’s a high degree of accountability built into frequent reporting. (People are more likely to follow through, since they might get asked about it the next day).
- It allows a convenient way to identify issues and barriers before they become crisis points.
- My team is fun and I like being able to spend a few minutes each day with them even though we are physically separated.