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Luke Melia

Scheduling One-on-Ones

Ed Gibbs muses about scheduling all his one-on-ones in a single day. He had previously been spreading them across two afternoons.

Like Ed, I also do weekly one-on-ones with each member of my team. In fact, Ed’s blog helped me decide to adopt this process. It has been an excellent way to support people on a personal level and address any issues early. I highly recommend it to every manager.

My one-on-one process has evolved in a different direction than Ed’s, though, so I thought I’d share it here. We’ve moved from 30 minute meetings to 15 minute meetings. Each meeting is scheduled either at the beginning or end of the day. This is mainly designed to 1) avoid interrupting war-room hours, 2) let me have my lunch hours free (lunch is the only time that doesn’t interfere with the team’s war-room hours).

Anyway, it works pretty well for us so far. I do six a week right now, and I generally pair with the person I one-on-one with immediately following (mornings) or preceding (afternoons) our meeting.

Do you have any nuggets or horror stories about one-on-ones?

RSS for everyone

“So what? I’m not a geek or high-tech kinda guy/gal. What can RSS do for me?”

I recently built a website for my friend John David Mann to promote his new book. About a year ago, I turned him on to RSS. He wrote a little something for his new site to explain RSS to his readers. He’s a fantastic writer, and I thought this piece might be useful to you to share with your non-geek friends who are missing out on the RSS phenomenon.

More than a catchy term

My colleague Wendy Friedlander has a great post on how “agile” is more than a catchy term:

Change is an absolute. Adapting to it is agile.

It is not an easy path, just a possibility for success.

I was reflecting on some similar ideas last night. We’re going through some growth (yes, I’m hiring if you’re interested), and while growth is exciting, there’s a lot of hard things about it, too. The challenge of finding the right people, reforming as a team, meeting increased needs and expectations, dealing with increased communication overhead. And that’s all on top of the ever-present challenge of shipping high-quality software.

There is no magic to agile that solves these problems. Instead, it gives you a fighting chance by creating a framework for reflection, communication, and continuous improvement. More important than that, though, is this: with a high-functioning agile team, you never face any problem alone. You’re tackling it with a group of talented people who you trust and who share your commitment to the team’s success.

LukeMelia.com created 1999. ··· Luke Melia created 1976. ··· Live With Passion!
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