To meet or not to meet?

Published on
December 1, 2022

When we did early discovery for we heard, among other things, two conflicting themes:

  1. Teams running daily standup wanting to switch to doing async updates because “it’s just a status meeting”, and
  2. Teams doing async check-ins who want to switch back to live standups because “some things just aren’t efficient over Slack and it’s quicker to align in a short meeting”.

Interestingly, both are right. What’s the point of meeting when there’s nothing to discuss? If participants only have status updates - that can be typed up and shared for everyone to read on their own time. On the other hand - being able to quickly address a blocker that’s slowing the team down or to get alignment on a pressing decision is one of the main benefits of running a standup.

Imagine how powerful it would be if you could meet live only when there’s something worth discussing and align asynchronously when no discussion is necessary. The challenge is - how do you know which path is best on a day-by-day basis?

When we started building we prioritized live standup first. And while the core value was centered around a live standup, we chose to offload part of the experience to async channels in order to optimize the time you spend with your team in the standup meeting.

  • We built a simple async prep experience that happens before the meeting. Spinach collects everyone’s check-in and any additional topics to discuss as a team.
  • Next, we introduced support for async standup. You can skip the live discussion and have everyone on the team post their check-ins, and that gets shared on the team's Slack channel at whatever time you specify.
  • Most recently, we added “Live Summary” - the ability to see the full content of the meeting before it even starts.

As a result, teams can see the exact agenda ahead of standup and make an informed decision on whether to have a live meeting or go async that day. No more “I guess we’ll meet since it’s on the calendar...”. And no more “that would have been way faster if we just jumped on a quick Zoom”.

Whether your team meets live or async, Spinach can help, with smart meeting summaries, action items, and ticket suggestions to accelerate your team. Spinach is your AI Scrum Master, AI meeting assistant, and so much more, because it keeps track of all the details, so nothing falls through the cracks. If you see value in both live and async standup, but struggle with the limitations of just one format, give a try and let us know what you think!

Read more: How to improve your daily standup format

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