Agile Hype: VanDev Podcast

April 26, 2009 by · Comment
Filed under: Agility, Podcast 

There is no single development, in either technology or management technique, which by itself promises even one order-of-magnitude improvement within a decade in productivity, in reliability, in simplicity. – Fred Brooks, from his No Silver Bullet essay

It has been almost 8 years since seventeen men got together in Utah to craft the Agile Manifesto. Since then, depending on who you listen to, agile practices have either totally turned the software industry around, or we are witnessing the latest attempt at defining that silver bullet. Read more

Real Assurance

April 19, 2009 by · Comment
Filed under: Leadership, Process 

In almost any field you can imagine, there has been a concerted effort to improve quality by proactively managing the process and systematically eliminating the errors that one would otherwise encounter again and again. I say almost, because even though there is no rocket science behind these techniques, most software organizations still don’t get it, and continue to waste gobs of money and work with massive risks. Read more


April 15, 2009 by · Comment
Filed under: Leadership, People, Teamwork 

When working in teams, there is always plenty of talk about responsibility and authority. In most teams, people are formed into a hierarchy where there is accountability and responsibility between people that often flows in one direction. My preference is to think of these two items equally shared by all: everyone has responsibility and accountability to themselves, the team, and the project they are collaborating on. Read more


April 2, 2009 by · Comment
Filed under: Leadership, People, Teamwork 

It is a common and overused expression that “there is no I in Team”. Implications of this are that when working in a team setting, actions are made based on whether they are good for the team as a whole, rather than for the individual. I often reply that “while this is true, there is an M and an E in Team”. Just as trite a reply, unfortunately, but the intent here is to recognize that decisions are not necessarily boolean in the ‘team’ or ‘me’ dichotomy, that the greatest team actions take into account the rights and needs of the individuals as well as the overall team goals. But even this is insufficient. Read more

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