Asynchronous daily stand-ups: The Mobivery’s experience
The daily stand-up is one of the most important meetings to manage your team. It’s also the meeting we do more often so it’s very important to take care of it and have good habits. Making this meeting asynchronous is key to foster a remote-friendly culture in your team or organization.
In this article we want to share the Mobivery’s experience doing daily stand-ups asynchronously. Mobivery is a software development agency founded in 2008. In their portfolio we find top-notch work for Spanish companies. They were actual early adopters of SCRUM and agile methodologies and know very well all its ceremonies. Since the company’s foundation they have had decentralized teams and their experience is really valuable to learn on how to care about effective communication. We invite Elia Amo — Product Owner @ Mobivery — to our blog.
Note: If you prefer, we have a Spanish 🇪🇸 version of this article.
What’s your team structure? And, what’s your role?
Our teams are basically composed of developers specialized in different technologies, UX/UI designers and a Product Owner. We try to be as interdisciplinary as possible, with the contribution from different knowledge areas. We even bring into the team daily workflows our client’s team members, being them as technical, design or marketing staff.
I am the Product Owner and I am in charge of the product definition and the project management.
In regard to the company communication, what habits have you changed since the start of the pandemic? What are the outcomes?
The pandemic hasn’t actually changed much our circumstances in the workplace. We were already doing remote work and we also have an office that people can go whenever they want.
The positive outcome is that now our clients are valuing more our experience in remote work. In that sense we haven’t lost productivity at any moment neither we have observed a social change to accept this model.
Before the pandemic all of us were meeting in the office for team building every three months. Now that’s more difficult. It’s something that we may improve, but we are still a united team.
In your opinion, how should an effective daily stand-up be?
An effective daily stand-up should be something quick where everybody is involved and where every team interaction is detected. Those interactions may be dependencies between the team members or to ask for help in an area where another person already has prior knowledge.
In this way, once the daily is finished, these persons can already organize themselves to check it out together.
How are your daily stand-ups?
In Mobivery we do small teams per project in which we work, so the dailies are usually quite efficient.
I believe that our daily is the classic setup where every person talks about what they did yesterday, what they will do today and if there’s any blocker.
We have started using Cassette in some projects, and now we’re having a hybrid approach: we do the daily in Cassette three days per week and the other two via videocall. This way we’re having the best of both worlds.
How has Cassette helped you?
Especially in my position — also happening to designers — some days I am having three or four dailies (one for each project). Using Cassette several days per week has unlocked a lot of load of meetings in our calendars.
Developers also are thankful because they can focus without interruptions at any time.
Once we gave it a try we mitigated a couple of concerns we were initially having: the possibility of locking blocked tasks or to lose the human touch.
Our next step will be to not only use it internally but to start using it with our clients.
Finally, a more relaxed question: How do you do team building?
As said before, we try to meet in person every 3 or 4 months if the circumstances allow it. In these gatherings we work one or two days all together and share several breakfasts, lunchs or dinners. We always take an afternoon off to play board games, to play in an escape room or even go to the beach.
In addition to that, every Friday we all meet in a video call to chat where we aren’t allowed to talk about work ;) Last year we were doing a format in which a team member was the protagonist to speak about himself. This way we know each other deeper even though we already do pretty well. This year we would need to think of something new. Everything is ok except talking about politics :P
Cassette: Structured async meetings for teams
Unlock your schedule with Cassette
Cassette is a free multiplatform app created to disrupt the broken meeting culture using voice notes. We believe that asynchronous work should unlock your schedule and bring back your own time. Cassette provides you an easy way to produce voice messages and consume them efficiently. It enhances meetings by adding structure such as agenda, due date and reactions.