No, the Ephox Talking Car isn't some new form of Kitt from Knight Rider … showing my age there. The Talking Car is a token we are using during our stand-ups to not only indicate who's turn it is to speak, but to remind the speaker of what the 3 main points to discuss are.
As I mentioned in my recent post on "XP Practice Champions", in our first XP Adoption review we identified stand-ups as a practice to focus on and improve. The introduction of the "Talking Car" was one of the ways we focussed on improving stand-ups.
So how is it used? In our case, the car is tossed to someone randomly, that person then talks about the following
- What they did yesterday
- What they plan to do today
- Any issues
before tossing it to someone else in the group.
As part of our continuous improvement, we recently reviewed our stand-up and decided it needed to be more story focussed. So the new list of topics are
- Done Stories
- Not Done Stories
- Today's Stories
With this list, we can address why a story wasn't completed, what we can do to complete it, advise the client of the delays and continue to communicate to the entire team what is being worked on.
By focussing on successful story completion and communication of progress to the client hopefully this will also help with our improvements to Weekly Iterations.