How Allo runs daily stand-up meetings remotely

By Stella Huang Oct 14, 2020
Oct 14, 2020

Our team at Allo runs stand-ups online every day, with many employees being 16 hours apart. Take a sneak peek into one of the meetings and see how we do it!

What is a daily stand-up?

Also known as the scrum meeting, the daily stand-up is a quick morning meeting that lasts about 15 minutes before individual work starts every day. Daily stand-ups were created initially for development teams to get aligned and plan out the day together. However, it is now widely conducted within all functional groups at many companies.

How does Allo run daily stand-ups?

Allo is a distributed team, located in San Francisco, California, and Seoul, South Korea, so we decided to do our daily stand-ups at 6:30 pm PT every day. It is a good time for the US team to wrap up their day and plan for the next day and the Korea team to start a new day. This article will walk you through one of our scrum meetings and see how we do it remotely utilizing the Allo platform.

For our team, we have a project called "Meeting notes." All the meeting notes are stored in this project.

Before our scum meeting starts, we create a new canvas for that day, select the daily scrum meeting template, and set the time and labels accordingly.

When it is time for the meeting, everyone on the team will get on the canvas's video call. It is crucial to keep the daily stand-ups short and sweet, so we make sure to start the meeting on time instead of waiting until everyone is present. However, we do have a place to mark attendance. When someone joins the meeting, they will change the opacity of their "name tag" to 100%.

For the members who didn't join, their names will stay transparent.

The standard status update at a daily stand-up usually pertains to these three topics: "What I did yesterday," "What I am planning on doing today," and "What is blocking my progress" but we know this might not fit 100% for all teams. At Allo, as we usually don't work together in the same room, we see this daily meeting as an opportunity to do a status update and connect. Before we start talking about work, we always spend a quick 5 minutes to talk about how we are feeling that day or what's happening in our lives. Every day, we will search for a sticker most accurately representing our current mood in our Allo sticker repository, and drop it onto the condition checking section.

As a team, we see the importance of empowering each other to work with joy and motivation. One way for us to do so is to take turns sharing a quote with the team. One last agenda before we start talking about work is the "quote time." Every day, team members will take turns to find a quote they like and share it with the whole team. Not only does it serve as empowerment, but it is also an excellent way for us to understand each others' values and viewpoints.

Another difference is that we don't talk about the things we did the day before during our daily stand-ups anymore because of the time constraint. Instead, we only report what we have done by the end of each day on our daily-retro Slack channel. For our daily stand-ups, we only talk about our plan for the day (or the next day, depending on the team member), our request for other teammates, and the problem we are facing. It is time for us to share our work progress and ask others to help if in need.

Daily stand-ups should be flexible

While the primary purpose of daily stand-ups is to have a quick meet up with the team and get everyone aligned, as mentioned earlier, it is crucial to understand that the meeting should be flexible and iterative based on the needs of each group.

At Allo ourselves, the process we introduced to you today is already the third version of our daily stand-up for the past year and a half. We are always open to ideas, and we expect new changes to come as our team grows, and as our workflow changes.

To make the daily stand-up fits better for your team, set up the agenda first, then modify our current template to fit your custom daily stand-up routine.

An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest.

- Benjamin Franklin -

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