In our development team we (unfortunately) do not use scrum, but nevertheless we are using some scrum elements in our daily work. Besides retros, we are carry out a daily meeting at which everybody has about 2min to describe, what he has done so far, what he will do next and what blocks him. But unfortunately, we have some persons in the team, that regularily exceed their talking time…
Because of that, we tried to find a way to improve the discipline in our meetings, but didn’t find a proper solutions: Simple timers haven’t been really practically because they were too complicated to use. An Android app also didn’t meet our requirements. Interestingly, we also didn’t find any gadgets in the internet, that aim at this problem – although I think, that we are not the only team with this problem.
In the end, our PM itself picked up the soldering iron and put together a simple to use timer, based on an Arduino. The timer diplays the remaining talking time using some LEDs on the front. If you are interested in building such a timer yourself, you can find here the instructions to build the daily scrum timer ball.
To finish I would like to mention, that the ball was not the magic cure for our problem: After the first weeks, the blinking LEDs were simply ignored and the people talked on until they got interrupted by someone. Because of that, our new strategy is now to shoot at the evil-doer with Nerf-guns 🙂