The only thing I know about our stand up meetings is that non of the particpants are stand up people, and all the elements are reminiscent of the stand up comedy I did when I was a chubby 13 year old entering high school; had good intentions, but left me suicidal.
I remember our first stand up meetings, they were supposed to take 30 minutes, but went on for an hour, hour and a half. They were had during the busiest times of my day, on the busiest day of all our weeks. While we were walking through every individuals to do list (I kid you the fuck not), I was busy getting a pile up of mails, my team members had to claw against more traffic, and the delays saw us all working later on a Monday. The worst part is, no one besides the boss was standing up, and no one could ‘stand up’ to the tyranny either.
As the organisation became bigger it was harder to expect people to be pulling their first reports, or visiting their first client at 08:00am, when we were all expected to be standing up for the stand up meeting. So we made the meetings at times like 6:00am, 06:30am, 07:00am and 07:30am and my favourite: 07:15am…all which failed dismally.
Slowly some of us were able to take control of our units, and have meetings at times that suited us. Everyone had an agenda, and it was beautiful. The unfortunate others were still under the tyranny of the bosses stand up, and the meetings were always long, started late, and sadly the good that did come out got diluted in the crap.
Fast forward a few years, and my boss is back with a vengence, departments are bigger, and we now need stand up meetings between the stand up meetings. So once again, we now have the weekly standup. We run through every single client, every single mundane task, being hi-jacked every few sentences. Still we do it, because within the first 10 minutes we get value, and mostly because it makes him happy.
Boss: “How often is the weekly stand up meeting?”
-“Once a week…”
Boss: “Well if it is not happening at least twice a week, then we should cancel it!”