Each morning at 9AM, Beeminder sends me an email showing me recent updates. I reply with the first line looking like '5 256 "Any comment I want to make"'. Within a few minutes, Beeminder sends me a second mail with a link to an updated chart. Although I am obese, I am very proud of the 18 pounds I've lost in the last couple of months. Here is my current chart.
|My Current Beeminder Weight-loss Chart|
Shortly after my first Beeminder post, Daniel Reeves from Beeminder.com reached out and we have been corresponding about a couple of things:
1. I should explain Beeminder's financial commitment model; and
2. How can we leverage this awesome tool to motivate a project team to commit?
I'm going to wimp out on explaining the commitment device (What happens when you go off track in the "Wrong" direction. Daniel suggested that as the next post, but I'll just quote Daniel and then paste in the description from Beeminder:
Alan, thank you so much! You didn't talk about the best part though: what happens if you go off track... :) That's my vote for your next post! But lots of stuff to say about using Beeminder as a productivity tool, too. Thanks again for the awesome testimonial!
Here is a link to the page that describes the Beeminder's "Sting."Danny of Beeminder
In short, if you go off the road on the "Wrong" side and don't get back in a day - your chart is frozen and you have to pay to resume. I have not had to pay because I've been over-achieving since day one. If I go off once - $5.00. The prices grow quickly though - the idea is to give a strong incentive to stay on course.
How can we leverage this tool for our project teams? I would like to dedicate a post to this one. I would also like to run a trial with one of my ongoing projects. But let me hint at my current thoughts. What if we put some beer money into a pool, and tied it to a burn-down chart for a scrum team. If we go off the road, the cash goes to Beeminder. If we stay on the road - success and a beer blast.
Daniel, I would love to get your first take on this!