What is Lean Coffee?

Lean Coffee is an structured but agenda less meeting that allows participants to gather, build and talk. It’s a great way to run Retrospectives by crowd-sourcing what the team really want to talk about.

Our implementation of Lean Coffee with this client was a way to informally discuss what was important to the team and look at ways to improve our efficiency, effectiveness and processes within the service delivery team.

How does it work?

  • We spend 2 mins writing down topics people want to discuss
  • We spend 2 – 5 mins minutes letting people explain their topics (15-30 secs each)
  • We vote on which topics to discuss in what order. Each person gets 3 votes
  • We start talking. We let the conversation run for 5 minutes per topic, at the 5 minute mark we take a show of thumbs (up, down, neutral) to see if we want to stay on this topic or move on

It’s really that simple. The power is that we have a list of topics everyone at the table is interested in and is motivated to discuss.

Benefits of Lean Coffee:

  • Talk about what is important to my team
  • Team decides how long we discuss each topic
  • Sharing experiences and challenges
  • We are solving problems together
  • Collaboration and team building
  • No preparation required
  • Free coffee on the boss!

About the author

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