How to make use of the idle time between projects? How to motivate the engineers? And even how to make a billion? With stickers and markers in our hands, we discussed these and many other pressing issues one Friday evening over a cup of lean coffee. It was the first Peter-Service meeting in the trendy Lean Coffee format and Saint Petersburg officially became the second Russian city with Lean Coffee at leancoffee.org.
The first Russian Lean Coffee took place in mid-November in Moscow and our Agile coach, Mark Kachanov, who is a sucker for the latest trends, decided to do an experiment within our company. As you may know already, Lean Coffees are arranged to gather people together, when they come up with the topics they want to discuss, choose the topics which seem the most interesting and discuss them in order of importance. Each discussion lasts for five minutes. When time is up, members vote either for continuing the same discussion or for switching to another one. They go on until they run out of issues or time.
Our first Lean Coffee gathered nearly twenty people. Three teams, consisting of the guys from the development, support and HR departments, discussed the most burning issues and everyone enjoyed it. As the members say themselves, Lean Coffee is a great format for sharing experience, searching for new ideas and spreading knowledge inside the company. It helps to discuss the most vital issues and the time limit makes it extremely effective and dynamic.
Needless to say, we’re going to continue with Lean Coffee.