Stand-up meetings are so 1914

February 3, 2012

Holding meetings standing up isn’t new. Some military leaders did it during World War I, according to Allen Bluedorn, a business professor at the University of Missouri. A number of companies have adopted stand-up meetings over the years. Mr. Bluedorn did a study back in 1998 that found that standing meetings were about a third shorter than sitting meetings and the quality of decision-making was about the same.

From: No More Angling for the Best Seat; More Meetings Are Stand-Up Jobs

We’ve been doing our fair share of stand-up meetings at af83 for a while, following one cool “agile” method or another. The “agile” world changes quite a lot, and it’s a good thing: it means we are trying to improve. The fact is our sometimes improvised stand-up meetings have annoyed the people nearby: those not attending (willing-fully). That’s because the office is setup in an open-space fashion, and many still have trouble with the whole “let’s book a room” thing.

Stand-up meetings are definitely shorter and more to the point, however I’ve come to appreciate sitting through meetings in a chair thousands of kilometers away from my team mates. Or better, lazily resting in a hammock: stress-less meetings at their best. But then I wonder how does that stand-up meeting revolution work with remote work? Does it mean each person is standing alone in front of her microphone and/or webcam? Silly.

The next best thing is no meetings.