DEV Community

Play Button Pause Button
Jayme Edwards πŸƒπŸ’»
Jayme Edwards πŸƒπŸ’»

Posted on • Updated on

A Tale Of Software Development Culture Change - Gone Wrong!

Let me tell you a story about one of the weirder software projects I've been on - and how trying to change the culture went wrong.

Early in my programming career I had a taste of success at a Fortune 500.

But I focused entirely on technology and basically had no soft skills.

So coming into a small company that wanted to grow their technology business seemed like it would be "easy".

Little did I know how simple decisions about the relationships I made (and didn't make) would lead to disaster.

There were also things outside my control, and I run into variations of these on every project to this day.

Whether you want to help a team be "more agile", maybe try and achieve DevOps, or just use the latest Javascript framework -

I hope this short story helps you avoid culture problems if you ever want to change your software development team.

πŸ“Ί Watch this video on YouTube

Or listen as a podcast:
🎧 Soundcloud


πŸ”” Subscribe for 90+ videos on healthy software development

Discussion (5)

Collapse
anacondaqq profile image
anacondaqq

I'm not so good as you or other people here, and I watched your video, but want to share my small opinion about situations when development goes to the mess.

How to make a hell in the code/work/teams/ and fire everyone:

  1. Implement: Agile/Scrum/GTD/Kanban and force people to follow it
  2. Paint graphs, write tons of docs and do everything except code
  3. Do not pay a good salary and do not make any motivation programs, your workers work really bad, they can't follow so ideally tuned Agile/Scrum/GTD/Kanban, so they are stupid and not deserve for a good salary and rewards.
  4. Do not have any abstract plans to which you must be tied (very abstract things), or create a very detailed plan which is locked between each task, and force people unbound and unlock task by task.
  5. Name a deadline without any beta/alpha testing and release it.
Collapse
jaymeedwards profile image
Jayme Edwards πŸƒπŸ’» Author

Ouch, sorry that sounds miserable. Maybe you can pick one of those things and see if there’d be a way to make it better?

Collapse
lewiscowles1986 profile image
Lewis Cowles

I think maybe part of the problem is that your boss won't want to let go of any advantage they perceive they have.

The only option becomes leaving the team to go elsewhere, but that takes time, and so things like 8+ hour developer days become a norm and you're not able to do your best work.

Instead of being in the zone, working for 6 hours a day you'll maybe hit 3-4 with 5 hours of meetings and just asking someone X or Y because you're fatigued and cannot do your best work for > 6 hours per-day

Collapse
phlash909 profile image
Phil Ashby

I really liked the meta-point: "be agile when introducing agile practices" :)

Might have to tone it down a bit here, enthusiasm currently outstripping my natural stoicism..

Collapse
jaymeedwards profile image
Jayme Edwards πŸƒπŸ’» Author

Thanks Phil! Even the staunchest stoic should be permitted to cut loose from time to time 🀣. Cheers!