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Chris On The Bridge: What is Essential?

By: Chris Greacen - 04/04/2020

During the pandemic I shared a short series of videos about some of the software development and teamwork topics that Lab Zero was facing. Here's one about getting real about what's essential

When you boil it down, what is really essential to getting your job done? How well are you set up for success? Do you have what's really necessary to get something done? We all have the ability to flex, but are you in touch with the bare minimums you need in order to get something done?

Do your teams have clear goals? Do they have the ability to reset or resize these goals? Do they have data? Do they have the ability to deliver code whenever they need to? Do they have visibility into the state of their code? Do they have feedback from customers?

What's essential to a software development team when your business is riding on their productivity?

Here's the transcript:

    Hey it's it's Chris from Lab Zero, doing another errand to pick up some essential services. You probably have seen me in some recent videos doing the same -- and trust me. I'm being very careful only doing what's necessary here.

    But it definitely gets me thinking about my team, the projects that were on, and how well our teams are set up for success. And I think about what is essential? Like what is really necessary?

    Maybe you are like me recently where you've got to make a bunch of adaptations for how you work, how you get stuff done, how you relate to people, and your your team, or your social network, or your family. Those changes are often times removing something from the normal way of operating.

    I don't go to a cafe any more. I love my cafe over in North Beach, and I miss those people and we got it you got to turn that off for a little while (hopefully just for a little while). Anyway that one's not so painful, because it's not really essential. Like I can make coffee at home. I got an espresso machine and I can make a pretty good latte.

    Really what we're boiling our daily routine down to are the things that are that are the minimal kit that's necessary to get stuff done. And I think about how one person's view of what's necessary may not jive with another's.

    What's necessary for your teams to be successful? Do they have clear goals to work toward? Do they have a way of talking with leadership about goals, and maybe resetting or resizing things? Do they have data available to them? Are they able to provision servers and build software on an as-needed basis? Do they have tools that give them insight into the quality of their work, either through some kind of continuous integration static analysis -- or even even an effective ux org that can test a hypothesis, engage with an end-user, and get feedback that matters.

    Are these things essential? You could do a lot with very little these days -- but if your business is riding on it your definition of it what's essential needs to expand. And I hope that you're able to get all of your essential needs met during this time when a lot of companies have undergone serious change.

    Let me know how you're doing, how you've redefined what's essential now you're working hard to meet your team's needs

    Thanks, be well!

More from this "Chris On The Bridge" series: