Standing Up for 15 Minutes: Why?

Today I wrote an article on the subject of 15-minute stand-up meetings


The ultimate management sin is to waste people’s time, Tom DeMarco and Timothy Lister told us in their famous book Peopleware [1]. This includes having pointless meetings that prevent people from actually doing anything useful. Nevertheless, some meetings are considered a necessary evil and therefore the so-called “agile movement” in software development has come up with an efficient way of dealing with this: the Stand-up Meeting in 15 Minutes. For those who have just woken up from ten years of hibernation, or having emerged from a cave that had no Internet access, I will explain this briefly.


A stand-up meeting is a daily meeting where people remain standing up to keep the duration of the meeting under 15 minutes. Teams use these meetings to answer three simple questions:


1)       What did we do yesterday?

2)       What will we do today?

3)       Are there any obstacles?


The daily stand-up meeting ranks as one of the most popular and most effective best practices in software development, despite the fact that the standing-up part and the 15-minute limit are illogical adaptations to an otherwise sound idea.

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