Many organizations I consult to or are intimately familiar with have embraced certain concepts or 'features' of Agile development while eschewing others - in particular, the daily "standup" meeting where team members transmit and share information with leadership and each other. As I have remarked in the past, these meetings are highly useful when properly facilitated, but are not useful (and perhaps damaging) to projects when not run well with a controlled format.
Oftentimes, an IT architect is faced with supporting multiple iterative projects simultaneously - providing the overall architecture/technical direction to multiple teams working in concert, but very focused on their specific portion - their project - of the overall approach. Of course, leaders for each team have their separate daily standup meetings, and here is where trouble starts for architects in this type of role: they can spend almost their entire workday, every day, attending standup meetings.
I have been in the architect's role on large projects managed in this fashion utilizing multiple project leads/managers/scrum masters, etc. In each case, these folks wanted me to attend their daily standup, and while its great that they consider me part of their respective teams, I decline the invites because once these teams grow past a quantity of say, three, a substantial part of my work day will be consumed in standups - that leave little room to get "real work" done or attend to other important issues.
This also takes into account the fact that a lot of standups go well past the allotted 15-30 minutes for various reasons, are held in numerous locations including different worksites, and generally deal with granularity and minutae that the specific teams are dealing with - code, testing, etc., that don't always need architectural input and direction.
Architects still need successful interactions with these teams on a regular basis - so what to do about it? When talking with project leads and facilitators in such situations, I offer the following:
1. I usually attend specific project standup meetings once per week, and generally speaking, Wednesday through Friday is better so the team has some work completed or in process as the week progresses. Mondays are not real effective because everybody is usually settling in from the weekend.
2. If there are architecture-related impediments or issues that need quick resolution, I'm always available to meet with teams or individual project leads and members as such needs dictate. This is not a standup meeting, but one to resolve issues or impediments, and are focused on those topics alone.
3. When there are architectural work products or issues to discuss, a separate meeting for such topics is required with the necessary attendees invited. From my experience, these types of meetings do not work well in a 'standup' format.
What I am not advocating here is that architects assume an "ivory tower" approach to these issues - becoming pompous that they somehow "grace" a meeting with their attendance and inputs. The fact of the matter is that in the scenario I'm describing, architects' time and efforts must be used prudently, and spending 1/2 to 3/4 (or more) of every day in various project standups is not going to be very productive for the architect spending such time, and the teams trying to gauge where they are on projects and resolve issues as quickly as possible.
Support your iterative/Agile project teams, but know your specific role and apply your time and effort wisely.