As a remote team working across continents and time zones, finding continuity as isn’t easy. We miss the spontaneous interaction and camaraderie that comes from being in the same space and serendipitously sharing ideas and anecdotes. With those limitations as well as a our various skills and situations I think it’s amazing that we’ve been able to build what we have.
Still I think we can do better as well as make the journey more enjoyable. One of the big limitations I see is that because we all work remotely and in our own silos, we sometimes miss what each other are doing. We miss out on celebrating the wins, and sharing the challenges. And it can sometimes feel like we’re not moving forward the way we would like.
My goal for 2021 is to make us a more tight knit and effective group, through the tools we use every day. By consolidating the places we collaborate online, we improve the quality and frequency of our interactions.
- Slack for communication — this is our office space. All communication is done here (a good idea to put it on your phone and turn Miit notifications on — we don’t care about your other channels though!)
- Notion for company and product management (including sprints) — By bringing everything into one place we can make use of automatic updates and cross links and reduce the burden of having to manually update documentation.
- Google Drive for file storage — nuff said.
We also want to automate as much of the boring stuff (and some of the exciting stuff too) so that you can focus on more of what matters. Plus automatic updates keep everyone in the team in the loop of what’s going on and keeps helps keep momentum and morale high!
Here’s what we’re automating:
- App builds and versioning — every time an update is pushed to Git a new build is created and shipped to both app stores (testing channels) and a notification is sent to the team via Slack
- Updates in Adobe XD — every time a change or comment is made to the product design or a new comment is left a notification is sent to the team via Slack
- Updates in Notion — the team is notified of any change company wide via Slack
- Weekly updates — via Standuply in Slack lets the team know what you’ve accomplished last week, what you’re going to accomplish this week as well as any obstacles you see in your way. These run from 6pm Sunday to 6pm Monday and are asynchronous to provide for different time zones.
- Monthly demo days — via Standuply in Slack lets you demonstrate to the team what you’ve built in the last 4 weeks as well as any other insights you’ve gathered along the way. These run from 9am to 6pm on the last Wednesday of the month and are asynchronous to provide for different time zones. Video and audio submissions are available.
Lastly we will run monthly product development meetings via Google Meet on the first Sunday of every month. These will include a retrospective of the last four weeks work (2x sprints), backlog grooming and sprint planning for the month ahead. Everyone has equal voice and a different team member will take on the role of scrum master and chair the meeting each month. The product backlog or whiteboard can be added to by anyone at any time with any idea.
I want to personally thank every one on my team for your efforts in making Miit a reality and am excited to see where the next year takes us.