Let’s make meetings efficient!

by Sanjeev on February 23, 2018

You probably just got off a work meeting with a dozen people. Few feeling vague about their presence in the meeting, few passively listening to other’s conversation, few who are absolutely clueless and few have something to contribute, but don’t get an opportunity. Hence, the objective of most meetings doesn’t seem to meet.

Here are some steps to make meetings effective:

  • Make sure only relevant people are invited to the meeting. All other interested parties should get updates from notes that comes out of the meeting. This gives an opportunity for others to be updated at their convenience. Also open up a dialog in the meeting notes page if someone has a different opinion and would like to be a participant next time
  • Add link to the meeting notes as part of the invite so you can add details and context to the page without resending the invitation. Those who are attending can decide if they need to be in the meeting or just follow the updates on the page.
  • Create a parent page for the topic/problem. List names of stakeholders and what their role is for particular topic/problem.
  • Attach meeting notes as child pages. Make sure people subscribe to get notifications of new contents in the parent page.

Below is an example confluence template for efficient meeting notes, that is a slight modification from default meeting notes


With growing number of people separated geographically, it’s incredibly hard to know who is talking in a remote meeting and reactions of others.

I have worked in a team that was separated by different timezones. We came up with an idea of using webcam for all meetings. Initially, it was hard for us to make using web camera a habit. But once we got accustomed to it, we could see that everybody’s engagement in the meeting improved. We started using Video calls for 1-1s, troubleshooting sessions, pair programming sessions etc. Became part of how we work.

High performing team research that google published is a very good place to start.

“Google found that teams with psychologically safe environments had employees who were less likely to leave, more likely to harness the power of diversity, and ultimately, who were more successful.”

For a team to establish trust, it takes lot of face time. With video conference, it has become possible to virtually bring everyone in the same room.


AWS – Microsoft AD setup with terraform

by Sanjeev on April 25, 2017

Goal – To setup Microsoft Active Directory in AWS


  • Create DHCP option set

  • Associate it with the VPC

  • Create an IAM role for the instance to use

  • Create SSM document. You can create a template file, but currently terraform doesn’t support list substitution.

  • Spin up an EC2 instance and associate the instance with the SSM document

  • Login to a machine that’s spun up and test out if the machine is connect to the domain you have created.
  • You will have to install Active directory management tools on the machine that’ connected to the domain

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