Posts Tagged ‘remote’

  • Retrospectives for Dispersed Teams

    Retrospectives for Dispersed Teams

    Oct 28, 10 • In Practices

    Many agile teams practice regular retrospectives – meetings where they evaluate review recent progress, events, and challenges, gauge the team’s mood, and propose changes to the way they work. For distributed teams, the retrospective is especially important. Here are some tips for holding a retrospective with a remote team. In any team it’s a good idea to take some time regularly to look back, discuss what went well and what went not so well, and make adjustments. In Agile software development this meeting is known as a Retrospective. Esther Derby and Diana Larsen describe a Retrospective like this: A special meeting where the team gathers after completing an increment of work to inspect and adapt their methods and teamwork. For dispersed teams, retrospectives are essential. Because dispersed teams are so dependant on effective practices and

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  • Avoid meeting hiccups with a dress rehearsal

    Avoid meeting hiccups with a dress rehearsal

    Oct 26, 10 • In Practices

    Coordinating a large remote meeting can seem like putting on a major stage production. Make sure your meetings go off without a hitch by practicing first. Picture this: it’s time for the very first whole-company monthly meeting since adding remote team members to the team. The presentation slides are all ready, everyone is at their desk, the clock is ticking – and half the company can’t connect to the videoconferencing server. You start a frantic troubleshooting session. People are tapping their fingers. Your manager starts wondering if building a dispersed team was such a great idea. This scenario is all too common in distributed teams. The fact is, remote workers are dependent on technology in order to make collaboration possible, and that technology doesn’t always perform as expected – often going down at the worst

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  • Wide Links #12: Agility, Attitude, Independence

    Wide Links #12: Agility, Attitude, Independence

    Oct 22, 10 • In Links

    A sampling of the week’s best articles about distributed teams and remote work, from around the web. This week, notes on distributed agile software development; an article that says changing mindset is a bigger barrier to remote work than adopting new tools; a post about how working remotely helps workers become more independent and self-directed; and much, much more. Distributed Agile: Cultural Differences/Expectation disconnect – Annotated Some notes on distributed software teams from a ThoughtWorks developer working in India. tags: wideteams As I mentioned in my first post about distributed agile a couple of months ago I’ve found that it’s much easier to build the wrong thing when working in a different time zone to the product owner but I wouldn’t say the ability to write maintainable code is much different.   6 rules for

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  • The Endless Break

    The Endless Break

    Oct 18, 10 • In Practices

    Everyone needs to take a break from time to time, especially if you’ve been collaborating closely for an hour or more. But when working together remotely, breaks have a way of stretching out longer than intended. Here’s one simple rule for avoiding the Endless Break. It’s a common enough scenario: you work together with a coworker for an hour or so, and then you hit a stopping point and decide to take a 5-minute breather. Both of you go for a walk, maybe grab some water, and then head back to the desk and sit down again to get some more work done. When collaborating remotely, it doesn’t always work out like that. You get back to your desk, and check your teammate’s IM status. It doesn’t say “away”, but she hasn’t posted anything on

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  • Wide Links #11: Trust, Balance, Camping

    Wide Links #11: Trust, Balance, Camping

    Oct 15, 10 • In Links

    For your reading enjoyment, a fresh batch of links from around the web! In this installment: building trust on distributed teams, maintaining balance at home when home IS work, and working remotely while camping across Europe. Trust Matters – Annotated An article about building trust in distributed teams. tags: wideteams When someone starts a call with: “So, how was everyone’s weekend?” really share something: “We had so much fun; my 5 year old daughter is playing T-ball and the girls were hilarious whacking at the ball and running around the bases.” We trust those who are willing to take the small risk of revealing something about themselves; encourage it, especially by role-modeling it.   The Future of Web Working: Management – Annotated A quick guide to getting started managing a virtual team. tags: wideteams How do people

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  • Wide Teams Podcast Episode 15: Intridea

    Wide Teams Podcast Episode 15: Intridea

    Oct 11, 10 • In Interviews, Podcast

    Intridea is one of the largest fully dispersed software companies that I’m aware of, and they are still growing fast. I’ve talked to them before – back in episode 9, I spoke with Michael Bleigh. When I visited the Ruby Hoedown in Nashville a few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to talk to a whole passel of Intrideans. We talked about why Intridea chose to build a distributed team, how they manage software teams that are spread across the world, and the tools they have used and built to facilitate communication

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  • 5 myths of remote work

    5 myths of remote work

    Oct 6, 10 • In Basics

    Working in a dispersed team has its share of challenges, but some of the fears that people have about remote work simply aren’t born out by the experience of real-world teams. Here are a few if the more common misconceptions I’ve encountered. Working outside the office is distracting. This is one of the most persistent myths I’ve run into. Sure, working from home can be distracting. But out of the remote workers I’ve talked to, the majority find their home office a better environment for focused work than a traditional office.Which shouldn’t really come as a surprise. After all, if you work with people you like, it means that your workplace is going to be filled with people you have a lot in common with, having conversations about things that are interesting to you! While

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  • Wide Links #9: Smart, Productive, Agile

    Wide Links #9: Smart, Productive, Agile

    Oct 1, 10 • In Links

    It’s been a while since I did one of these. In this edition, productivity tips, videos, notes on distributed Agile processes, and more. A short video interview with Salim Ismail He talks about the importance of meeting your team in person at the start of a project. But what I found most interesting is when he says that he sees dispersed teams as a way to get the best possible talent no matter where they are located. tags: wideteams Work Smart 2: Stay Connected While Telecommuting | Fast Company – Annotated A lot of great advice in this short video. tags: wideteams Working remotely is so liberating–you get to do what you do best, in a location of your choice, without your co-workers or boss always looking over your shoulder. But telecommuting also requires a

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  • Screenshare-palooza

    Screenshare-palooza

    Sep 16, 10 • In Toolkit

    The ability to share your screen with a remote team member is an essential piece of the remote collaboration toolkit. When it comes to screensharing software, there is a dazzling, sometimes baffling array of options. Here are a few I know of. Skype has built-in screensharing. It is currently display-only, but it works across all platforms. They appear to be using the same video compression technology for it as they do for their video chat, which means that while the picture can be a bit blurry, it copes well with temporary network slowdowns. Good old VNC is still one of the most robust and cross-platform solutions for sharing desktop control. There are multiple VNC clients and servers for every OS, both free and paid. DimDim, Yugma, YuuGuu are all launchable from the web, all have names that

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  • Wide Teams Podcast Episode 13: Interviews with Jody Alkema and Peter van Hardenburg

    Wide Teams Podcast Episode 13: Interviews with Jody Alkema and Peter van Hardenburg

    Sep 13, 10 • In Interviews, Podcast

    Two final interviews from RailsConf 2010 this week. The first is with Jody Alkema, a web developer with Domain 7 who spoke to me about his experience augmenting his Agile software team with some remote help. The second is with Peter van Hardenburg, a developer at Heroku who is transitioning back to a collocated team after a couple years of working remotely

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