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Team Members Who Miss the Daily Standup Meeting

Company Culture
Internal Communication
Productivity
Fairness
Team Processes

6 December, 2017

Nicolas De Nayer
Nicolas De Nayer

VP Engineering at Doctolib

Nicolas finds a positive way to ensure his engineers attend Doctolib’s daily stand-up meetings.

Problem

Daily stand-up meetings are a part of Doctolib's culture. However, this ritual has a structural problem. Developers tend to arrive late and miss the meeting. When a developer misses the meeting, then they miss crucial information from their team, and their team misses crucial information from them. For example, the developer may be blocked. It is not part of Doctolib culture to reproach or punish employees. So, how can we make sure developers respect the stand-up meetings without reproaching or punishing them when they arrive late?

Actions taken

The first thing we decided to do was choose a slot that fits into everyone's agenda. However, developers were still arriving late and missing the meetings. We then decided to tell people it wasn't a problem if they could not attend the meeting, but that they had to warn the team if they were going to miss the daily stand-up. Even after this, people would still miss meetings and would forget to tell their team that they weren't going to attend. So, we decided to put a system in place. Developers who arrive late get a cross next to their name. If they get five crosses, they have to pay for croissants for the whole team the next day, and then the cross count is emptied.

Lessons learned

This approach has meant we can avoid reproaching or punishing late developers. However, it also means developers who have five crosses next to their name face consequences. The developer has to buy the croissants and organize the breakfast, but this results in the team enjoying a nice breakfast, and the developers benefiting from the gratitude of their team!

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