Injecting new skills into the team

Last week I passed through a very nice experience, so, I couldn’t hold my self about the desire to share it.

Out team needed to build something really new and a bit though, also we have a very mixed skill sets in the team, furthermore we had to bring awareness to everybody about what should be done and how, but we had no easy way of doing this. The solution couldn’t be better, we defined two sessions of what I called “team design/programming”, where we locked ourselves into a room, using a notebook and a 50″ TV, this way everyone could see what was happening. We started presenting the goal of that session, what we would look for, what to build, the platform we’re aiming and so on.

After that we started coding and all of us could code a bit, fix, re-factor, bring new ideas, ask questions, discuss and help. That was really an amazing experience, in despite of the fact that sometimes someone wanted to dominate the notebook ( that includes myself 😀 ). The bottom line of these sessions was a well defined platform, everybody having the knowledge about what we did, why, how, the ability to provide support to other teams, and now we have these new skills into the team. That was really astonishing.

2 thoughts on “Injecting new skills into the team

  1. Sounds like the design sessions we tried when re-designing EOD, except that we didn’t code (and didn’t have a 50″ TV). What did you do with the resulting artifact? Was it a throw-away prototype or did it actualy made to CVS?

  2. Yes, it looks like our EOD session, but as I sid, the difference is at that time we were only thinking about how to tackle our problem, and how to design a better solution.

    This time we did something different, because we had to develop something new and make people learn it at the same time, because we have different skills inside our team, actually our teams are a kind of cross skills team ( server-side, client-side, QA and so on mixed). So, I built a presentation about why we’re there, what we would see there, what we should achieve and so on.

    The result was a proven architecture, a metrics report and a model to develop services in Python, aiming high performance and high scalability. This month we’re going to publish this documentation to the other teams, and probably make some presentations to them. 😉

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