Industry Insights From Our Team

July 23, 2018

You Have an Answer for Everything

Leaders should have all the answers, right? If you always have the answer to everything, or an answer for everything that’s wrong, you are probably doing yourself — and your team — a disservice. Let me tell you a little story. Many years ago I came to have yet another new boss at a company where I excelled well beyond my pay grade. But this time she had called me into her office for what I’ll call “an uncomfortable conversation.” I sat there and talked about the whys and wherefores. She sat behind her desk, watching me silently, and letting me go on for […]
October 2, 2016
Ready for prime time?

Code Mirror: Ready for Prime Time?

A mirror…It can make a difference when you’re getting ready to go out, to go to a meeting, or even to have a video conference call. Taking a look in the mirror, by itself, doesn’t fix anything. But knowing that it’s about to be show time, you take extra care. The same goes for your code. A code review process is like looking in a mirror. By itself, it fixes nothing. But knowing that the review coming up will probably cause a developer to become more conscientious over time. Since Microsoft has opened up its ecosystem to open source resources like Git. Because of […]
August 25, 2016
Dev in DevOps

Whatever Happened to the Dev in DevOps?

DevOps is a term that comes full of controversy. A lot of people are on the bandwagon, while others are waiting for the term to jump the shark, and eventually go back to business as usual. Regardless of where you are along the spectrum of loving or hating the term DevOps, one thing is certain. More and more people are using it to describe a system administrator who uses scripts, or tools like, Chef, Puppet or Ansible, in order to provision infrastructure. There is also usually an expectation of being able to deliver this in 100% cloud, or hybrid cloud environments. […]
August 15, 2016
Delta's Digital Disaster

Delta’s Digital Disaster

Delta’s recent digital meltdown on August 8th has many ramifications and lessons. What could a good approach to DevOps have done to diminish it? Don’t get me wrong. I’ve worked for extremely large enterprises, and I can appreciate the innumerable number of details that go into complex, interconnected systems. I know first hand how painful it is when everyone is scrambling to bring systems back online, while trying to appease disgruntled customers on the receiving end of the problem. I’m sure that Delta, like many other companies, has articulated a DevOps philosophy. But too often, conversations about DevOps are reduced to what […]
June 25, 2016
With SonarSource Co-Founder and Leadership Team

Fix Your Leaky Code

A leak is never fun. If a pipe bursts in your house, and your floor is getting ruined, should you try to find a mop, or look for a way to fix the leak? The same logic applies to making your code  more maintainable, reliable and secure. During the Sonar Summer City Tour 2016 (#ssct2016), that is the message from SonarSource. The company’s product aims to analyze an application’s source code, so that quality is baked into it from the time development starts, to the time that the final product is delivered to your end clients. How is that quality expressed? It can be summarized […]
May 2, 2016

Two Keys to Successful Transformation

A lot of companies believe that they can transform the way they do business. Some go so far as to include transformation in some job titles. You might be an architect, an agile coach, or otherwise responsible for setting the new standards or transitioning to a new set of tools. Sometimes you may have just one shot at doing it right; it’s worth taking the time to do it right. Let me suggest two quick tips to make your life easier. Education before Enforcement All chances for a lasting transformation depend on how well change management is executed in the organization. People […]
April 26, 2016
Prince - Kiss

4 Principles from Prince

While many people’s obsession with Prince revolves around “Purple Rain,” the song that first captured my imagination was “Kiss.” It was released the year that most of my family immigrated (yes, legally!) to the United States. For me, that was the summer of both Springsteen and Prince. I would spend hours watching and listening to both men, in awe of their talent. In the spirit of Kiss, and keeping it short and sweet, I will share 4 career lessons I take from his life. Develop yourself. If you like something, master your craft. For many songs, Prince received all the […]
March 25, 2016
Status Reports

Yet Another Status Report? Oh, Joy!

Reporting should be in any organization’s blood, whether it is a startup, a large enterprise, or something in between. Many teams are bogged down because there are legions of people who seem to do nothing but create status reports all day. Is that truly what their calling in life should be? I touched upon this conundrum just a bit in the previous blog entry, and wanted to say a few more words on the subject. When you are dealing with a particularly complex system with many moving parts, folks should have enough understanding to at least articulate the model. It does […]
December 5, 2015

The ScrumMaster is not a Boss

Many times I come across job descriptions where the ScrumMaster role is just another hat worn by a lead developer, a development manager, a project manager, or someone else in a similar position of power over the development team.  Of course, everyone has a budget, but skimping on this role is not the place to try to save money. Worse yet, sometimes companies hired for agile coaching will explicitly, or tacitly, endorse that conflation in responsibilities. To them, securing the engagement is more important than doing the job well. By definition the ScrumMaster is a servant leader; they should have the traits of both a […]