Two months ago measures were put in place by Governments in order to slow down the spread of the coronavirus. For most people, this meant going from office life to home office life.
At Aivero parts of our team have always been distributed and working remotely. It was therefore already the norm to run most meetings internally and externally via video. Below are some thoughts on our experience from being a completely remote and distributed team since mid-March:
Starting a day is just as important as ending it in a meaningful way. Before leaving the home office at the end of day we write a daily update – analogous to a Daily Standup or Daily SCRUM meeting in the morning one might be familiar with:
1) What have you done today?
2) What is blocking you or where are you stuck?
3) What will you be tackling next time you are working?
This practice allows every one of us to close the day at a time of their choosing, reflecting on what we have achieved, where we are stuck and plan the next day. Removing the decision on what to work on from early pre-caffeine times.
Starting the day off we take some time to talk about non-work stuff before jumping into standups. Another element to bring some casual joy to the process is our “Daily Carrot” or “The Carr-Hoard” named after the mythical place where the Irish fairies and leprechauns keep their golden treasures. In our case it is a token of appreciation given by one dedicated `Hoarder` to the rest of the team for their work done the previous day. On most mornings it takes shape in a gif selected for each team member. Often group around one topic such as `Appreciation`, `Good Boy` or `Carrots`, obviously. Other incarnations of the `Carr-Hoard` have been cooking recipes or Monty Python videos.
For internal asynchronous communication, we use Twist, a distraction-free space centred around threads in various channels.
Google Meet is used for stand up meetings and one on one calls. External meetings are held either using Google Meet or Zoom.
As an opt-in, we have set up a “voice room” using Discord. This allows team members to quickly do one on one audio meetings or feel the “office buzz” in the common room.
To visually collaborate on ideas and software design work, we use the whiteboard solution provided by Miro.
Heading into the Summer remotely we are keeping our hopes up towards the Autumn when we intend to gather our team for some old school in real life team building!