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Discussion on: 3 Things You Can Do to Improve as a Developer

jbristow profile image
Jon Bristow

I love the five whys, but once you get used to it, you tend to find that layer 2 or 3 is almost never a single thing, and it tends to spider out from there. Balancing the razor point of the 5 whys against stepping back and taking in the big picture is where I still have trouble.

If you’re trying to decide how to turn the titanic earlier, following that rabbit hole too closely will not solve the (arguably much more important) problems of “we want all the bulkhead seals to close properly” and “we need enough lifeboats” and “someone needs to invent radar” and “proper supply chain quality control for materials”. (Thanks to @swiftonsecurity for this example.)

Being able to know when you need to switch from your loupe to your panoramic mountaintop view is a skill that I am finding difficult to practice intentionally. It’s more of a “gut feeling” right now.

john_papa profile image
John Papa Author

Yes - absolutely! This can spider out in a few directions. I feel that this is OK, because as long as it is on topic, it helps really validate and reaffirm that the strategy is solid. Or it helps validate that we need a little more design to make it solid.

The key is to not let this stop you from iterating either. Create something, gather feedback, and adjust - quickly.