Wednesday, 5 September 2012

The Three Best Practices

 Here are the three best things which I have learnt from the best organizations that I have worked with.

Best Practice : Include the family : I was in my formative years of working as well as a mother of a four year old. My days passed in a haze. Deadlines, technical problems, teleconferencing along with tantrums of  my daughter. The organization dedicated a day for the families where the employees did cultural activities with their families. I enrolled my daughter. The organization took the pains of picking her up from home, included her in a group dance and she proudly performed on stage ! A  story book was given to her by the CEO of the organization as per the policy of rewarding the kids of the employees who stood first in class. And my daughter just loved the "300 Bedtime Stories" she received. She still cherishes the moment and the book.  A small act , but it had a lasting impression.

Best practice : Being on Time :  The mantra was "Be on Time every time".  Posters were all around the organizations. Everybody came on time for meetings. If someone was late, everybody stared at her ! The leaders were always 2 minutes before time. Such was the culture of the organization, that it was ingrained in everybody. And for me, I have carried this to all my organizations as well as in my personal life. Being punctual is a commitment for respecting yours as well as others time.

Best Practice :  Let them see it :  This organization had whiteboards on every possible place. The walls, the pillars, the partitions !  Every project had whiteboards assigned to them where the daily activities of the team were written. There was a morning ritual for the project to have daily stand up meetings. Everyone knew how the project was doing, what were the issues and risks , what were the to-dos for the day, who needed help and what were their commitments.  It was an open office with no partitions and the white boards were visible to the full team . Always.  And the visibility had a profound effect on the project and team dynamism. 

Want to try these  in your organization ? 


  1. Yup...sure...without any hesitation & without any problem.

  2. These are indeed 3 good practices. However, the third one - whiteboard - would be difficult for me to use since my project teams are mostly virtual. Any good ideas on how to implement a similar idea but in a virtual environment?

    1. In a virtual distributed environment, having a daily standup meeting at a time which is conducive to the full team works well. Instead of the white boards, an excel sheet or a company blog works well. Though this is not as effective as physically seeing the whiteboard, having webcams or video conferencing once a week helps in teaming and improves clarity about the project.Talking about virtual teams , I recently found out an interesting fact. All the employees of Automattic, a web-services provider, work from home, even though they are scattered in 26 countries, according to the Wall Street Journal. Assignments are posted on internal blogs, and meetings take place via the internet. There's one in-person "grand meeting" every year. In fact , during the grand meeting, the teams get emotional at the airports while meeting each other !

  3. You may try a good tracking tool with a dashboard. For example, in my company we use Comindware tracker ( It is a web-based software allowing the members of a remote or virtual team to collaborate within a project. The dashboard shows the status information, so as deadline reports. It's a good substitution for whiteboards.