How can you make sure that your remote team performs optimally and that they deliver the highest possible output? In this article, we will discuss two factors that play a major role in this regard.
Everyone must be familiar with the business case and the roadmap
The best results are achieved when your team is constantly thinking along with you. For the Product Owner (the person monitoring the quality of the output), that means they should refrain from constantly providing new information and changing the assignment. Instead, they must brief their team very carefully. Everyone must be intimately familiar with the ins and outs of the business case and the roadmap. At the very least, the first year of that roadmap should be clear to all involved. Likewise, it is important that all developers understand who will be using the system once it is done. Even if a developer only works on a single requirement or module, they must know exactly how and where their piece of the puzzle will fit into the big picture. It is essential to maintain a constant focus on that critical information. During the backlog refinement meeting held at the start of every sprint, you must therefore clarify the requirements in the backlog. You discuss the desired output of the sprint and the best, smartest and fastest way to achieve that result. During these meetings, you not only focus on what needs to be built and why, but also devote some attention to the technical details. This ensures your remote team will actually develop what you need.
It is important that everyone strictly adheres to the process
Especially when working together remotely, it is essential to follow a good process. If your remote or virtual teams are not meeting their deadlines, that is usually because you have not recorded and agreed upon a clear process. Alternatively, it could be because people are not experiencing the consequences of failing to follow the process closely. This may sound a bit harsh, but that strictness is absolutely essential. It helps to schedule ceremonies (the meetings) on standard days and times. Secondly, it is important to keep your team up to date on developments within the organisation (e.g. why certain priorities are changing). This helps to keep people optimally involved. Of course, the Product Owner must also strictly adhere to the process. For example, they must always be present during important ceremonies, such as the schedule and evaluation. This helps them maintain their connection to the team and allows them to keep setting the right priorities from a business perspective.