A 100-person ART that never meets in person

ScheduleOnce program director Yoram Weizman knew it full well when his company decided to take their ART completely online. Right there in article 6 of the Agile manifesto: The most efficient and effective method of conveying information to and within a development team is face-to-face conversation.


Face-to-face is changing

“The founders of Agile didn’t have what we have in terms of online tools today. They had a point to make about the value of direct interaction compared to expressionless emails and phone calls. The insight was powerful at the time. It still is – it’s just that the meaning of ‘face-to-face’ and the meaning of ‘remote’ are changing.”


And so, with an ART on his hands that features members from the US, Israel, India and Europe, the decision to take things online completely was a no-brainer, though born of necessity rather than opportunity. Yoram will elaborate on the advantages, as well as on why it hasn´t been easy. ““Mobility is always an issue. It would have been a challenge even when you need only work nationally, even in small countries like Israel. I look forward to speaking at the RTE event because my experience with this online ART can help others struggling with the logistic challenges of a scattered team.”




Physical PI-events: a logistics challenge

He continues: “Getting everyone together in one physical location for a PI event every several months is a huge drain – on resources, on personal focus and on efficiency. Our virtual ART means a world of difference on each of these accounts, but it brings its own challenges: at such a distance, how to inspire people for the next chapter of development? How to ensure a meaningful exchange and bonding if you can’t pat people on the back, if you can’t have a beer together when the session is done? How to signal a ‘smoldering fire’ if you can’t physically ‘smell the fear’?


Yoram says his tale will be one of possibility rather than caution, though. “We’ve found our ways to deal with these challenges. Today we’re reaping the benefits – so the future for us is very much to stay on this virtual track. I’m eager to showing other RTEs how we did it – as eager as I am to learn from them how they did the things they’re proud of.”


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