The Beauty of the Daily Standup

Life moves at a very fast pace, and work is no exception.  Often, we find ourselves hidden within cubical walls, working independently without much interaction, rarely taking a break to accomplish our fast-paced objectives.  Gone is the “office water cooler” where we used to discuss last night’s TV shows, our kid’s soccer games, and upcoming vacations.  Human interaction has become a series of tweets, emails, and postings.

Yet, when you enter the world of Scrum, team communication returns.  Scrum is an iterative and incremental method within the Agile software development framework, for managing development of new systems and processes.  Team members across diverse functions work together as one unit and are physically co-located for close collaboration.  Daily face-to-face communication is encouraged among all team members and disciplines in a project.

One example of team communication is during the Daily Standup meeting.  We have all heard the specific guidelines:  the meeting starts on time, in the same location, members come together prepared with Sprint (or increment) updates, time-boxed to 15 minutes. Yet… this is where the magic happens.  In my experience as a Scrum Master, gathering the team every morning offers bonding time that had been previously lost.  Much more is happening beyond sharing project information and accomplishing that day’s goals.  People are communicating, commiserating, acknowledging each other’s accomplishments, and, in fact, having fun at work.  The “office water cooler” has returned!  And that, my friends, is the Beauty of the Daily Standup.