sketchboard blog

Ready-set-sketch

By Helena Palha May 26, 2016

We’ve kicked off the conversation and we can’t wait to start hearing from your team. This week we wanted to keep breaking the ice by giving you a practical challenge: Start sketching today!

You might think you’re not talented enough, say you can’t sketch to save your life and close this window. Maybe you find sketching would waste your team’s time. But be honest - are the daily Scrum standups saving you time? Does your team often have breakthroughs during those standups or are they just another distraction from actual work? More standups mean more back and forth, and unless you’ve a meticulously organized team, more back and forth will probably lead to nothing short of chaos. (We’ll get back to this on a future blogpost).

Wasted time with different handouts

To take full advantage of sketching, you’ll need to awaken your team’s creative side. The idea of creativity is often linked to the notion of perfectionism. Fear of being less than perfect means many of us spend time obsessing over how we should read one more book or enrol in yet another workshop before we dare to present any creative work.Then again, any reasonable professional knows that there can be no such thing as “completely ready”.Sketching can give you the right push. Yes, sketching out your team’s dilemmas takes confidence. It feels vulnerable to present a sketch of your unfinished idea for a solution, but it also happens to be the quickest way to step out of your comfort zone and prepare to tackle a challenge. If you can sketch it, you can start it.

Some developers see manual sketching as an effective tool for the conceptual stage. However, this off screen method takes away the possibility to immediately translate any insight into practical steps. It also rules out chances to directly involve your remote experts. (Don’t worry, we’ve solved that part for you with our endless online whiteboard!)

As stressed we stressed on previous posts, sketching doesn’t require a special talent. It’s a skill you can train, like playing the guitar, learning a new language or becoming good at your favourite sport. If you’ve enough grit to do one or more of these things, you’re more than qualified to introduce sketching to your team.

Wasted time with different handouts

A team sketching session is a great way to encourage common focus. After all, it’s pretty much impossible to check emails, take phone calls or forward documents while sketching. Drop the whiteboard and post-it notes. Go for an endless online whiteboard instead, and keep your team’s work safe and accessible from any location. A morning stand-up in your time zone might be a horrible challenge for a team member in a different part of the world, but a sketch on a team board can solve that and help your all team members start their day/week on the same page.

Less is more - cut out on the back and forth, allow your teamwork to flow naturally, and find out how a little sketching can go a long way. Over to you now – try it out and come back to tell us about it!