2015-09-27

Mike Hadlow: Heisenberg Developers

Mike Hadlow – Heisenberg Developers (from 2014):

“Software development […] is a creative and experimental process. […] Numerous studies have shown that effective creative work is best done by motivated autonomous experts. As developers we need to be free to try things out, see how they evolve, back away from bad decisions, maybe try several different things before we find one that works.

[…] What about the feature itself? Is it really such a good idea? I’m not just the implementer of this software, I’m a stake holder too. What if there’s a better way to address this business requirement?

[…] As soon as you ask a developer to tell you exactly what he’s going to do over the next 8 days (or worse weeks or months), you kill much of the creativity and serendipity. You may say that he is free to change the estimates or the tasks at any time, but he will still feel that he has to at least justify the changes. The more finely grained the tasks, the more you kill autonomy and creativity.

[…] Good developers are used to doing necessary, but hard to justify work ‘under the radar’, they effectively lie to management about what they are really doing, but finely grained management makes it hard to steal the time in which to do it.”

(Via Rich Rogers.)

Update: See also: Autonomy, Mastery and Purpose – My take

Sun, 27 Sep 2015 18:37:00 +0000