I’ve just started one on one meetings with my new team. I’ve read about them in Behind Closed Doors, and I’ve seen the success that Ed Gibbs has had with them, so I finally decided to jump in. I did the first round a couple weeks ago, and then got to “busy” to keep them up. Today, I got back on track and setup a recurring meeting. Already I feel more energized about where we’re at. It sounds kinda cliche, but I really feel like I have a deeper insight into the motivations of each developer. I get more detailed suggestions about development practices, clearer reports of code problems, and insight into where the perceive the biggest challenges are for their work or for the team.
When I meet with the team members one on one, I really feel like I’m better equipped to help them out instead of blindly give directions or simply get in the way. I think after even just short exposure to one on one meetings, I’m sold.
One thing I’ve found helpful: turn off your monitor. I’m also investigating how to forward my phone directly to voicemail.