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On the whole, the team ceremonies don’t need to change that much, below are some suggested tweaks to help things to run smoothly.
Duration: 40 minutes
An important prerequisite for any retrospective is that everyone can be seen and heard effectively. For this reason, it is best that everyone is on a level playing field and joins the retrospective remotely using a separate laptop and headphones.
We use the same structure for the retro regardless of whether it is collocated or virtual (or a bit of both). Work on a task together -> Ask everyone to answer a question -> Affinity Group answers -> Prioritise actions / next steps. This allows everyone to have a voice and an influence on the outcome of the retrospective.
Sometimes the overlap of time zones means there isn’t a part of the working day where you are all in core business hours. To make effective use of the time use a Trello board to capture topics in advance, maybe even do the dot voting in advance so that you can start the retro getting into the issues that are important allowing the time to be used more wisely.
Duration: 15 minutes
A regular session involving the team, customer and users to share and review recent progress towards a goal involving a live demo of new features or changes to an existing or new product or service. Remote teams are sometimes more distant from the customer or users of the product or service they are building, so a regular showcase is an excellent opportunity to receive feedback and also share challenges and learnings.
Duration: 15 minutes
This ceremony is designed to give an update on key events across the team. It is an update from the management and includes information from steering groups, changes in product direction, new joiners and leavers and so forth. It is also an opportunity for Q&As across the teams. It's basically where important contextual information is provided to the wider team.
Duration: 1 hour
Because working with remote teams is difficult, it is important to reflect on and improve how cross-site people and teams are operating. This is run as a retro or a review of the team charter.