GorT has recently attended a number of professional presentations by members in the Software Development community advocating “lean” management approaches and “self organizing” teams. The interesting thing is that when professionally presented there is some meat behind these concepts and it makes sense for some cases. I, personally, believe that this movement is driven by the rapid change in technology and current managers’ inability to relate, communicate and motivate their staff. This begets bad managers and sour employees. However, the discussion is viral and permeates into companies where these issues don’t exist but the staff latches onto bits and pieces of the concepts. No documentation. No managers. Work on what you want. Etc.
Let me clarify these in the context of the deeper presentations on the topics:
No documentation – within the team. That is, you organize the team so you don’t need to document things that get handed from designer to developer or developer to tester, etc. You still document the code. You still create documentation as part of deliverables to customers.
No managers – really, “product owners” or “technical leads” take on much of the soft skills management of the staff. Although one can argue that these practices haven’t been tried long enough to see if the soft skills take place and staff get the career growth and mentoring that they need. I have my doubts.
Work on what you want – yeah, within the scope and constraints that the company and department’s goals and mission statements outline. And, a team may not accept you if it’s full. Or if you don’t have the right skills for what they’re doing.
So instead, you end up with disillusioned workers who think these things are all great but never realize that there is a broader picture and reasoning behind things that companies do. As GorT Sr told GorT recently, “there is a reason why some management structures have persisted through time.” Or maybe as GorT told the Volgi and Czar the other evening, “these are a bunch of babies…they just don’t get it.”
I’m all about being a supportive manager – get my team what they need, give them a vision or direction as to where to head and then knock down any obstacles that I can. But they need to bring it from their side an understand that life isn’t there to serve them. You don’t always get everything. There is no free lunch…even if your company buys snacks, covers your health insurance premiums and has other great benefits.
The world is a tough place…time to grow up a bit.
GorT is an eight-foot-tall robot from the 51ˢᵗ Century who routinely time-travels to steal expensive technology from the future and return it to the past for retroinvention. The profits from this pay all the Gormogons’ bills, including subsidizing this website. Some of the products he has introduced from the future include oven mitts, the Guinness widget, Oxy-Clean, and Dr. Pepper. Due to his immense cybernetic brain, GorT is able to produce a post in 0.023 seconds and research it in even less time. Only ’Puter spends less time on research. GorT speaks entirely in zeros and ones, but occasionally throws in a ڭ to annoy the Volgi. He is a massive proponent of science, technology, and energy development, and enjoys nothing more than taking the Czar’s more interesting scientific theories, going into the past, publishing them as his own, and then returning to take credit for them. He is the only Gormogon who is capable of doing math. Possessed of incredible strength, he understands the awesome responsibility that follows and only uses it to hurt people.