Stand-Up Facilitation: Agile Daily Stand Up For Team Progress

Stand-Up Facilitation: Agile Daily Stand Up For Team Progress

Agile Daily Stand-Up For Team Progress

In the world of Agile methodologies, the daily stand up meeting is a core practice. The agile daily stand up meeting, also known as the daily scrum, is a short, focused meeting that helps teams stay aligned and progress toward goals. 

In this blog post, we will explore ways to improve agile daily stand-up facilitation through the four stages of the learning journey. We will look at tips for utilizing a burn-down chart, how to ensure that the meeting is focused on progress toward the iteration goal, and how to facilitate decision-making effectively. For a thorough assessment of your current coaching process status, we offer a free agile assessment for Scrum Master that you can take advantage of. Knowing the current state of your agile process will help determine the best techniques to choose.

Stand Up Facilitation and The Learning Journey

At Lean Agile Intelligence, we believe that Stand Up Facilitation is a crucial skill for Scrum Masters. It involves the ability to facilitate a stand up meeting and enable the team to inspect their progress toward a common goal. We value this skill as it promotes effective communication, transparency, and collaboration among team members. We divided the learning journey into 4 different stages: Developing, Emerging, Adapting, and Optimizing. In the following sections, we will discuss each stage in detail as well as provide practical tips and techniques to help you strengthen your skills in this area.



Source - Daily Meetings: 5 Reasons To Stand Up and Scrum Every Day



A facilitator “developing” an understanding of the value of Stand Up Facilitation and adopting the foundational techniques should focus on the following improvements:

  • The What: Ensures that team members who are actively working on items in the Iteration (i.e., Sprint) participate

    • The How: The stand up is meant to be a planning meeting for team members; therefore, if they are not at the meeting, it should not commence. 

  • The What: Leverages data (i.e., burn down chart) and a visible board to help ask the right questions to surface risks and impediments

    • The How: Some helpful tips for utilizing a burn-down chart at the stand up.

      • Make sure the team understands the chart: Before using the burn-down chart in the daily Scrum, make sure everyone on the team understands what the chart represents and how it can be used to track progress.

      • Update the chart before the daily Scrum: Ensure that the chart is up to date before starting the daily Scrum meeting. This will give the team a clear picture of the current progress toward the sprint goal.

      • Focus on aging work: Discuss the age of items and prioritize before starting new work. You can utilize the aging work-in-progress chart daily to improve your delivery. You can find out more details about that chart here.





A coach “emerging” beyond the foundational techniques of Stand Up Facilitation and embracing it as they become more proficient should focus on the following improvements:

  • The What: Ensures the meeting is not a status meeting; instead, progress towards the iteration (i.e., sprint) goal is the focus

    • The How: The stand up is meant to be a planning meeting for team members

      • Tips to improve your daily standup…

        1. Focus on the flow of stories to DOD completion instead of personal status updates about tasks.

        2. Make sure the board is updated in real-time or before the meeting at a minimum.

        3. Review the burndown chart and scrum board throughout the sprint and ask yourselves what it should look like tomorrow and the following day to be on track for completing the sprint goal and come up with a plan together to achieve it.

        4. Encourage collaborative working techniques like pairing, mobbing, and swarming as part of the plan when needed or desired.

        5. Throw out the standard three questions for one sprint and change to the above approach to see how it changes the focus of the meeting if you notice your standup is mainly a status meeting.

  • The What: Ensures the meeting results in an actionable plan for the next day of work

    • The How: The Daily Stand Up is an official inspection and adapt event in scrum. Before discussing the progress toward the current plan or making changes to the plan, the team should use a visual board to inspect the current status of all the work and the plan itself. Traditionally scrum teams use the “To Do, In Progress, Done” format for a board, but there are no rules for how your board should be organized. Many teams prefer to map their actual process into columns on a board. What is important is that all work is visualized and represents the current state. 

  • The What: Utilizes techniques (i.e., parking lot) to facilitate follow-ups for items that do not impact all attendees

    • The How: To avoid conversations that move the daily stand up away from its intended purpose, facilitators can suggest creating a “parking lot” as a reminder for team members to have follow-up conversations as needed after the daily stand up is completed. For more information on the Parking Lot technique, see this post by Lisa from

  • The What: Keeps the team on task, keeping the length of the meeting equal to or under 15 minutes

    • The How: Facilitators do not enforce a time limit but instead use coaching and facilitation skills to maintain short daily standup lengths. The reason the scrum guide suggests 15 minutes or less is to focus the meeting to achieve its purpose, which is to inspect and adapt on progress toward the sprint goal. If a meeting is a significant daily status update or solutioning session, it will likely go over the 15-minute timebox.


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"The stand up is meant to be a planning meeting for team members; therefore, if they are not at the meeting, it should not commence. "

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A coach that is “adapting” the Daily Stand Up Facilitation to extract the full benefit should focus on the following improvements:

  • The What: Facilitates decision-making at the stand up so team members can proceed with their work

    • The How: Facilitating decision-making involves guiding a group of people through a process that allows them to decide collectively. Here are some tips on how to facilitate decision-making effectively:

      1. Define the problem: Ensure that the problem or decision to be made is clearly defined and understood by all participants. This will help to focus the discussion and avoid confusion.

      2. Establish criteria: Identify the criteria that will be used to evaluate potential solutions. These criteria should be specific and measurable, and agreed upon by all participants.

      3. Encourage participation: Encourage all participants to contribute their ideas and opinions. This will help to ensure that all perspectives are considered and that the best available information informs the decision.

      4. Manage conflict: If there are differing opinions or conflicts between participants, acknowledge them and work to find a way to address them. Encourage participants to express their concerns and opinions, but keep the discussion focused on the problem.

      5. Evaluate alternatives: Discuss and evaluate the various alternatives that have been proposed based on the established criteria. Encourage participants to ask questions, seek clarification, and challenge assumptions.

      6. Reach consensus: Work to reach a consensus on the best action. This may involve further discussion or negotiation and may require compromise.

      7. Document the decision: Once a decision has been reached, document it clearly and communicate it to all stakeholders.

  • The What: Teaches others facilitation techniques for the stand up so they can facilitate effectively on their own

    • The How: There are a wide array of facilitation techniques available to practitioners of a daily standup. As mentioned above, one that we recommend is to focus on item age. For more facilitation techniques in general, see this free resource. 

  • The What: Works with the team to use the stand up to replace other ad-hoc meetings

    • The How: We recommend a video by Professional Scrum Trainer Ryan Ripley that details how to utilize scrum events for replacing other meetings. In this Scrum Tapas video, Professional Scrum Trainer Ryan Ripley looks at a short exercise he runs with his Scrum Teams and when working with other Scrum Masters to help eliminate extra meetings. Ryan evaluates how a requested meeting may fit into one of the 5 Scrum Events, getting greater involvement from the team and stakeholders and helping to deliver less meeting time. You can find the video here.



Source - What are Time-boxed Events in Scrum?



A coach “optimizing” knowledge sharing of the Stand Up Facilitation practice learnings across the enterprise should focus on the following improvements:

  • The What: Teaches and shares advanced techniques to Stand Up Facilitation outside of those they directly support (i.e., Communities of Practice, Leadership Workshops, Mentoring)

    • The How: A large part of growth as a facilitator is the ability to share your knowledge and experiences with peers and leadership and learn from one another. This can be done through guilds, COPs, one on ones, lean coffees, and more.


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"Facilitating decision-making involves guiding a group of people through a process that allows them to decide collectively."

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The daily stand up meeting is a vital practice in Agile methodologies as it keeps teams aligned, focused, and progressing toward their goals. However, the effectiveness of these meetings heavily relies on the facilitator's skill level. A skilled facilitator can guide the team through the meeting seamlessly, enabling team members to collaborate, share information, and address any impediments they encounter. Our blog post provides practical techniques in different stages of the learning journey, that Scrum Masters can implement to enhance their facilitation skills and optimize their team's daily stand-up meetings. To further improve your facilitation abilities, take advantage of our free Scrum Master assessment to identify areas for growth and sharpen your skills as a facilitator.