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How To Run A Lean Stand Up Meeting

A lean stand-up meeting should be brief, focused on specific tasks and progress, include only necessary team members, and conducted standing up to promote efficiency.

A Lean Stand Up Meeting, also known as a Daily Stand Up or Scrum Meeting, is a brief, daily meeting typically held within Agile project management and software development teams to report on progress and resolve any quick issues. It is designed to be fast and efficient, typically lasting no more than 15 minutes, where each team member stands up to maintain a sense of urgency. Each participant is expected to address three key points during the meeting: what tasks they completed since the last meeting, what their goals are for that day or until the next meeting, and any potential roadblocks preventing or hindering progress. Thus, it encourages regular communication, immediate issue resolution, and efficient workflow among team members.

What is the purpose of a Lean Stand Up Meeting?

Running a lean stand-up meeting as a leader serves the purpose of promoting transparency, collaboration, and agility within a team. It enables quick decision-making, highlights any obstacles or bottlenecks, and fosters a sense of accountability among team members. Through effective communication and information sharing, this lean approach increases productivity and drives continuous improvement.

How To Run A Lean Stand Up Meeting: Step-By-Step


Step 1: Preparation

Before the meeting, it’s crucial to properly inform all necessary team members about it, guaranteeing their awareness and attendance. This preparation phase also involves organizing the meeting space, whether it’s physical or virtual, in a way that facilitates effective communication. In addition, making sure all required materials, resources, and technologies for presentations or collaborations are readily available and functional is a part of this preparatory stage. Careful planning in this phase can significantly improve the efficiency and productivity of the meeting.

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Step 2: Agenda Setting

Creating a comprehensive meeting agenda is pivotal for productive discussions. Focus on three major topics: firstly, review the actions and progress made since the last meeting; secondly, identify and assign tasks to be completed before the next meeting; and finally, bring out any obstacles or hindrances affecting the progress, and brainstorm solutions.

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Step 3: Role Assignment

Assigning roles can enhance the efficiency of a meeting. Key roles could include a facilitator, who will guide and steer the conversation, ensuring important topics are covered. A note-taker’s role is crucial for documenting key discussion points, action items, and decisions. Lastly, a timekeeper is needed to keep the meeting on track, respecting everyone’s time, and preventing any possible overrun.


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Step 4: Time Boundary

A Lean Stand Up Meeting should be crisp and focused. It’s suggested to limit its duration to 15 minutes to ensure efficiency. The time limit for each discussion topic needs to be respected by team members to prevent overruns and maintain the meeting’s momentum.

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Step 5: Meeting Execution

Kick off the meeting efficiently and immediately focus on the task at hand to prevent veering off-topic. Adopt the strategy of a standing meeting, effectively ensuring everyone’s physical engagement and maintaining brevity, which further promotes a streamlined and focused discussion.

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Step 6: Address Impediments

Any difficulties or hindrances that surface during the meeting should be dealt with promptly. If these challenges are not solvable within the meeting timeframe, designate particular team members to tackle them post-meeting. This assignment ensures continued progress and prevents lingering unresolved issues, thus promoting team productivity and project progression.

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Step 7: Plan Next Actions

Each team member is required to share their individual plans before the next scheduled meeting based on previous discussions. This open sharing process fosters a transparent environment about what tasks are being worked on. It also creates a system of accountability, ensuring everyone is responsible for their assigned tasks, promoting efficiency within the team, and minimizing any potential misunderstandings or duplications of effort.

Questions to ask as the leader of the meeting

1. What did you accomplish since the last stand-up meeting? – To ensure visibility and accountability for individual progress.
2. What obstacles did you face? – To identify and address any barriers that may hinder progress.
3. What are you planning to work on next? – To provide clarity regarding upcoming tasks and priorities.
4. Do you need any support or resources? – To offer assistance and ensure team members have what they need to succeed.
5. Are there any dependencies or potential risks? – To proactively address any potential issues that may impact workflow.
6. Are you on track to meet your goals? – To assess individual and team progress towards achieving targets.
7. What experiments or improvements have you made? – To encourage experimentation and continuous improvement within the team.

As a leader, preparing a lean stand-up meeting agenda involves focusing on the essential goals and objectives. Keep the agenda concise and time-bound, outlining the key points to be discussed and assigning time limits for each topic. Prioritize actionable items, eliminate unnecessary discussions, and encourage team members to come prepared. This will ensure a productive and efficient stand-up meeting.

How To Prepare For A Lean Stand Up Meeting
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In a lean stand-up meeting, it is important to focus on topics that drive progress and eliminate waste. Key discussion points should include the team’s daily goals and progress, identifying and resolving obstacles, sharing updates on current projects, and acknowledging achievements. This streamlined approach ensures that the team stays focused, accountable, and continuously improves their work.

See Our Lean Stand Up Meeting Template
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Software tools to facilitate a Lean Stand Up Meeting

Software helps leaders run lean stand-up meetings by streamlining the process and providing a centralized platform for collaboration. It enables teams to quickly report progress, discuss roadblocks, and set goals in real-time. With automated reminders and easy access to meeting notes and action items, leaders can efficiently facilitate these meetings, improving communication, productivity, and decision-making.

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Running a lean stand-up meeting ultimately boils down to efficiency, focus, and respect for everyone’s time. By streamlining the meeting duration and sticking to the agenda, you can effectively discuss the tasks at hand, strategic plans, and problem-solving techniques in a short span of time. It’s all about creating value, encouraging team collaboration, and fostering an environment conducive to productivity and progressive action. Practice might fine-tune the setup, but the measures provided in this post are designed to help you get started with lean stand-up meetings, ensuring they are impactful, meaningful, and efficient. Make judicious use of these guidelines to turn your stand-up meetings from ordinary to extraordinary, thereby making them an invaluable tool in your business arsenal.

Popular Questions

What is a Lean Stand Up Meeting?

A Lean Stand Up Meeting, also known as a daily scrum, is a short, stand-up meeting often held in agile projects to ensure that each team member is on the same page. It provides a forum for individuals to share updates, potential challenges, and immediate plans, promoting visibility and efficient workflow.

What is the typical duration of a Lean Stand Up Meeting?

A Lean Stand Up Meeting typically lasts about 15 minutes. It’s structured to be brief yet efficient, offering a quick update on progress and bottlenecks. Due to its short duration, team members are usually required to stand to keep the meeting expedited.

What are the key components of the Lean Stand Up Meeting?

The Lean Stand Up Meeting usually covers three main points brought up by each team member What tasks they completed since the last meeting, what they plan to do until the next one and if there are any obstacles or issues that might be obstructing their work.

Who usually leads or facilitates the Lean Stand Up Meeting?

The facilitation of the Lean Stand Up Meeting usually lies with a project manager or a scrum master. However, everybody in a team is encouraged to participate and share their insights, as it is a collaborative process.

How does a Lean Stand Up Meeting aid in project management?

Lean Stand Up Meetings facilitate better communication, early detection of impediments, quick problem-solving, and stronger team collaboration. This helps in effective project management as it ensures that the project progresses smoothly, keeps the team aligned, and keeps everyone accountable for their tasks.