Hi @Michael Wood. Thanks for the talk and the book recommendation 🐍 in Suits; can you give more examples how to empower people not to hide away anymore in hierarchical enterprise org structures?
06/09/2022, 5:59 PM
Hi @Terry Sullivan, there is a bunch we can talk about here. For example, we convert to a learning organization. Often you'll hear a "fail fast" mantra, but part of what you want to provide is learning organization - one that can take risks. What we mean by ‘fail fast’ really is that we want to destigmatize being wrong about something. To do so, we need a safe way to test ideas and theories.
In other words, if this feature falls flat, we learned that we need to pivot. That is a good thing! Stop investing in something that doesn’t produce results.
In order to provide that level of safety, I need clean and transparent automation and controls. When Etsy has a developer release code on the first day of employment, it’s not (necessarily) because that code will revolutionize the business. It communicates to that developer that you will make an impact every day, and we are not fearful of you making mistakes.
There are many things that we can dig into on team structure, transparent communications, etc., but I hope that’s a bit of a start
06/09/2022, 6:05 PM
Thank for your answer. By saying
we need a safe way to test ideas and theories
, what would you describe as a safe way at this point?
06/09/2022, 6:08 PM
Organizationally, empowered PMs measured by learning objectives. “We will determine if X or Y yields greater revenue attach rate…” kinds of things. Additionally, micro-service style delivery, automated pipelines for code delivery, traffic shaping capabilities at the service tier, potentially feature flags, blue-green deployments.
We learn most effectively in production.
This is why I spent a little time discussing cognitive load. Another way to frame that same topic is “risky.” If I’m reponsible for absolutely everything, then I feel at risk. I will move much slower. So, can my automation and best practices, audit and compliance by asserted via intentions at build? Then code delivery takes that load and risk off of the table for me. I think that’s where we are moving.
I was working with a very hierarchical org and the executive really made it a point to say over and over “we will fail, but we will fail forward.” And then backed that up with revamped information sharing on learning objectives, etc.