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How To Run A Kanban Weekly Meeting

A Kanban weekly meeting should be run by reviewing and updating the Kanban board, discussing individual tasks, setting priorities for the next week, and addressing any bottlenecks or issues in the workflow.

A Kanban Weekly Meeting is a regular assembly of team members designed to address ongoing tasks, work progress and potential roadblocks within an Agile or lean project environment. In line with the principles of the Kanban framework, the meeting’s focus is to visualize workflow, optimize productivity, and reduce waste. During this meeting, team members review the Kanban board, which represents the state of work in different stages (To Do, In Progress, Done), identify bottlenecks, and prioritize tasks. Through open communication and collaboration, the goal is to ensure every team member understands their responsibilities for the upcoming week and that the project stays on track.

What is the purpose of a Kanban Weekly Meeting?

The purpose of running a Kanban weekly meeting as a leader is to ensure effective communication and collaboration within the team. It provides an opportunity to review progress, identify bottlenecks, and address any issues or concerns. By regularly discussing the tasks on the Kanban board, the leader can help the team stay focused, prioritize effectively, and achieve their goals efficiently.

How To Run A Kanban Weekly Meeting: Step-By-Step

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Step 1: Preparation

In this crucial phase, all necessary materials like the Kanban board, user stories, and task lists are assembled. Each team member is prompted to scrutinize the Kanban board beforehand and equip themselves with pertinent points for discussion, fostering an environment of preparedness and efficiency.

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Step 2: Participation

All members of the project team, from the project manager to the junior team members, are expected to attend this meeting. This inclusive approach fosters an open and democratised platform for active participation, encourages a diverse array of viewpoints, promotes enriched discussions, and leads to more innovative solutions for project challenges.

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Step 3: Review of the Previous Week’s Work

During the team’s review of work from the previous week, they reference the organization tool, the Kanban board, for a visual representation of task progress. Every task card that was transitioned to the “done” column is thoroughly discussed to ensure its completion status. This includes a meticulous verification that the task is indeed accomplished to its entirety and that there are no residual issues necessitating further attention. This review process promotes accountability and clarity, ensuring that no loose ends are left untied in project management.

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Step 4: Prioritize Tasks for the Current Week

The next procedure involves determining and ranking tasks for the present week, a process typically achieved by referencing the ‘backlog’ or ‘to do’ column on your Kanban board. During this task assignment, it’s crucial to align team members, paying careful attention to several factors such as imminent project deadlines, any dependencies among tasks that may necessitate a certain order of completion, availability of resources to execute tasks, and the complexity of tasks. These factors collectively assist in accurately assigning priority levels, ensuring efficient workflow.

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Step 5: Assign Tasks

Upon prioritizing tasks, they must be entrusted to individual team members considering their respective skills, proficiency, and current workload. The goal is to ensure that everyone’s tasks and responsibilities for the upcoming week are explicit and clear by the conclusion of this exhaustive process. This facilitates a streamlined work progress and aims at maximizing team productivity.

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Step 6: Discussing Concerns and Obstacles

In meetings, team members are actively encouraged to voice concerns or discuss challenges encountered. This transparent practice unveils unseen issues, enabling the entire team to creatively collaborate. Consequently, innovative and collaborative solutions can be cultivated, ultimately enhancing the team’s ability to overcome hurdles together.

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Step 7: Finalizing the Kanban Board

After tasks are delegated and discussions finalized, it is essential that updates are made to the Kanban board to accurately demonstrate any changes. Acting as the source of guidance, the board will now direct the team’s work plan and execution for the subsequent week.

Questions to ask as the leader of the meeting

1. What tasks have been completed since the last meeting?
– This question helps the leader track the progress made by the team and enables them to understand the productivity levels.

2. What tasks are currently in progress?
– This question allows the leader to grasp the ongoing work and identify any potential bottlenecks or issues that may require additional support.

3. Are there any tasks that are blocked or stalled?
– This question helps the leader identify any obstacles or challenges that team members are facing, allowing them to provide assistance or make necessary adjustments to keep the workflow smooth.

4. Are there any new tasks that need to be added to the board?
– This question ensures that all relevant tasks are captured and helps the leader prioritize and allocate resources effectively.

5. Are there any changes in priorities or deadlines?
– This question helps the leader stay updated on any shifts in priorities and ensures that the team is aligned with the most important tasks and their associated deadlines.

6. Are there any tasks that can be moved to the “Done” column?
– This question encourages the team to review and update the board, keeping it accurate and reflecting the real progress made.

7. Is there anything else the team needs to share or discuss?
– This open-ended question gives team members an opportunity to bring up any relevant information, concerns, or suggestions that may not have been covered by the previous questions.

Learn how to prepare a Kanban Weekly Meeting

As a leader, preparing a Kanban weekly meeting agenda involves several key steps. Start by reviewing the progress and status of tasks from the previous week. Identify any issues or bottlenecks and create a plan to address them. Prioritize the upcoming tasks and assign them to team members. Finally, set aside time for team members to voice any concerns or suggestions, encouraging open and transparent communication.

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Software tools to facilitate a Kanban Weekly Meeting

Software greatly assists leaders in running Kanban weekly meetings. With its user-friendly interface, leaders can easily create and manage boards, track progress, assign tasks, and monitor team productivity. The software also simplifies communication by enabling real-time collaboration and providing insights through visual analytics. This allows leaders to efficiently allocate resources, identify bottlenecks, and make data-driven decisions, ultimately improving the effectiveness of their Kanban meetings.

Conclusion

Running a Kanban weekly meeting can significantly amplify your team’s productivity by ensuring everyone is aligned on tasks and progress is being tracked. Remember, the key elements are effective communication, updating the Kanban board continually, maintaining transparency, and promoting participation from all team members. However, every team is unique; so while this guide recommends a standard process, don’t be afraid to adapt and modify it to best suit your team’s workflow and culture. A well-organized Kanban meeting can undoubtedly turn into a powerful tool for accelerating team performance, improving efficiency, and fostering a culture of collective responsibility.

FAQs

What is the purpose of a Kanban Weekly Meeting?

The purpose of a Kanban Weekly Meeting is to review the progress of tasks on the Kanban board, identify any possible bottlenecks or delays, discuss solutions for the challenges, and plan for the coming week’s tasks.

Who should participate in a Kanban Weekly Meeting?

The entire team using the Kanban system should participate in the meeting. This often includes team members, project managers, and any other stakeholders that directly interact with the Kanban process.

What topics are usually covered in a Kanban Weekly Meeting?

Usually, the following topics are covered in such a meeting review of work done in the past week, status of ongoing tasks, identification of bottlenecks or blockers, planning of tasks for the next week, and discussing any improvements necessary for the Kanban system.

How long does a Kanban Weekly Meeting normally last?

The duration of a Kanban Weekly Meeting varies based on the team’s size and the number of tasks to discuss. However, ideally, they should not exceed an hour. Keeping meetings concise ensures efficiency and productivity.

What is the role of a facilitator in a Kanban Weekly Meeting?

The facilitator’s role in a Kanban Weekly Meeting is crucial. They oversee the meeting’s flow, ensure that all significant issues are discussed, keep the team focused on the agenda, and foster an environment where everyone feels comfortable sharing their views and ideas.