Hi Everyone :wave: Looking for some inputs. I am a...
# platform-culture
m
Hi Everyone 👋 Looking for some inputs. I am a product manager in a developer platform team that provides proprietary languages and tools for product developers who build products for external B2B customers. There are other teams in the platform which support the core capabilities, such as the database engine/search, etc. So, my team provides an abstraction layer that gives access to these underlying platform capabilities. Problem: Product teams often bypass my team and start communicating directly with the underlying teams that own the core services. Both my team and the underlying core service owners belong to the same overall org, so it never seems to product team that there is a “distinct” layer that enables/exposes the underlying capabilities in the platform to the product teams. As a result, my team is often asked to deliver access/features/APIs that have been discussed and defined by the underlying capability team and the product team, without any input from my team and therefore my team always end up joining the game late. Ideally, I would like product teams to first connect with the abstraction layer (my team) to discuss their requests, and then we can bring the underlying core services teams on board to deliver the asks. Here are my questions: 1. Are there any documents on best practices around engineering and product management that I can use to influence this? 2. Are there any documents on thinking the overall platform in this way of 3 layer architecture and not P2P architecture way of thinking and working?
a
i would debug why they bypass you vs try and force it
s
It also depends on the organization culture and discipline. Try to find IF your team is causing any bottleneck for the Product Team due to which they prefer to directly contact the core services team.
a
I would just start with “What do you love about working with these teams directly?” - you’re selling a product (aka your services to these up stream teams) and they have rejected your product. This is one of the issues w/ platform engineering - it is a monopoly so the instinct is to ask the question you asked - if this was a startup you would die bc of lack of PMF.
m
@Madhur Jain for me this sounds like unclear team responsibilities and interaction modes. In particular a mixture of subsystem and your platform teams and unclear interactions. Team Topologies give a good overview and suggestions I suggest you have a look. If you need more help feel free to ping me. I’m researching this area and am happy to share my thoughts.
a
this is a really heavy weight hammer and based on what was described as their role is something they can’t resolve even if it’s a mess. maximize leading yourself first before trying to debug org issues (this applies even to leaders)