They seem very productive. Get a team in the room (or virtually via video chat), and let every individual in the room share his/her update or status. Everyone is up to speed at the same time. They exist in all different kinds of forms, Monthy updates, Weekly’s, of Daily standups.
But there is a catch (or a couple). The bigger the team, the more time it takes. Not only the meeting itself, but it almost never is on a timeslot that works for everyone. And next to that, chances are that some of the updates are not relevant for you. If not all.
“Status meetings are the worst kinds of meetings. Eliminate them and you’ll actually know more, save a pile of money, and regain dozens of hours a month” - Jason Fried, Basecamp
“It’s easy to eliminate meetings and regain a bunch of time”, says Jason Fried. “Start knocking out one meeting a month. See how it goes. Then one a week, and so on. Ease into it and you’ll see the benefits mount. Soon enough you won’t look back.”
At basecamp, they replaced the status meetings with an automated message in their collaboration software. Daily at the same time, everyone in the company gets the automated question “What did you work on today?”. You can answer that at a time that suits you best.
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