App for Leaders: Facilitating virtual collaboration

Miro facilitates virtual collaboration, writes Perry Timms

With virtual, remote or home-based working suddenly the norm in 2020’s pandemic-affected world, what tools could help recreate some of the in-person moments we’re missing?

Miro is one candidate. It replicates the use of sticky notes on a whiteboard for creative thinking and planning, aiming to enable collaboration in a virtual space. It delivers an impressive experience, feeling instantly like those paper-based processes that work so well for creative thinking, group collaboration or creating agile task backlogs.

It’s asynchronous and real-time, so it feels just like watching someone write a note and put it up for you to read. You can then move and cluster notes, and it’s zoomable, too: you can make the workspace larger or smaller, as if peering closely at a group of stickies or standing back to zoom out. It also works well as a mind-mapping tool.

Miro allows you to save, export and print your work, while chat, video and content-sharing add to the interactivity. APIs (application programming interfaces) enable integration with Slack, Trello, Jira, GitHub, Asana, Dropbox, Google Suite, and Microsoft Teams.

Product managers, Scrum Masters, designers and strategy consultants alike will find Miro a useful way to compensate for forced distancing and to span multiple time zones. It’s a pliable focal point for innovation, strategy and deployment planning. Miro could become a go-to place for those isolated at home or remote from their colleagues.

— Miro is available for Mac, Windows, iOS and Android.

— Perry Timms is an independent HR/OD practitioner and CIPD adviser on social media and engagement. Follow him on Twitter @PerryTimms