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[Reading time: 1 minutes 46 seconds] Maybe you’ve heard of the term code smell. It was coined by Kent Beck. A code smell is “any characteristic in the source code of a program that possibly indicates a deeper problem. Determining what is and is not a code smell is subjective, and varies by language, developer, and development methodology.” . Or so says Wikipedia. Now, there are not just code smells. There are also other kind of smells: organisational, or cultural, or whatever else. Read More →

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[Reading time: 1 minutes 47 seconds] Maybe you’ve read Daniel Pink’s Drive. In this book, Pink argues that there are three factors to increase performance and satisfaction: Autonomy — The desire to be self directed Mastery — The urge to get better skills Purpose — The desire to do something that has meaning and is important This is taken to apply to the feelings of a person, the foundations of their motivation. Read More →

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[Reading time: 38 seconds] “It makes you feel like for the first time you are developing software as it should be developed, you’re executing a process the way it should be”. This was what I heard, in so many variations, from teams that moved from cumbersome old-fashioned development processes to lean, rich DevOps practice. Doesn’t that sound just fabulous? That’s something we perhaps don’t talk about often enough when we speak about adopting DevOps practices: how good it can feel. Read More →

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There’s lots of great DevOps literature around. Excellent, insighful, practical books like, say, the DevOps Handbook, or the rightfully acclaimed Accelerate. But for all their merits, they feel like they have one flaw: they make DevOps seem so easy, and straight-forward, and simple. In reality DevOps can be hard and confusing. And books that make it seem straight-forward feel almost accusatory: “It’s so obvious. Why can’t you pull it off?”. In a weird way, the high quality of the books, and the arguments presented, is their Achilles heel: they can be intimidating. Read More →

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[Reading time: 1 minute 8 seconds] Consistency is crucial. Whether you’re raising puppies or children, managing teams or working out. Whenever you ask for advice, one of the arguments will inevitably be “be consistent”. Alright. So far, so obvious. What’s less obvious is how you can even be consistent in a large organisation (to be fair, someone said that as soon as an organisation has more than one member, it will start to be inconsistent. Read More →

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[Reading time: 1 minute 40 seconds] One participant in the business simulation I recently ran found another interesting takeaway: don’t be considerate of your colleagues. Well, that’s not really what he meant of course. But he realised that he would often not speak up about his issues that he could use help with because “the others have enough on their plate”. He was trying to be considerate. But he came to see that this is not actually helpful behaviour: he withheld critical information form his colleagues. Read More →

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[Reading time: 2 minutes 28 seconds] Yesterday I enjoyed co-hosting another round of a business simulation designed around the well-known DevOps novel The Phoenix Project. It was great fun, as usual (it’s my favourite training of all). And the participants learned a lot, as usual. But it reminded me once more of that lesson that’s so easy to forget: it doesn’t help to half-ass many things. Concentrate, focus, get one thing done – then focus on the next. Read More →

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[Reading time: 1 minute 32 seconds] It’s great to be right. It feels good, of course. But if you’re a generous person, you’ll probably also want to share whatever new wisdom you’ve discovered. Good on you. …but what if others can’t see what you see? What if they take a different view, come from a different direction? Ironically, this sort of thing may be one of the biggest challenges during the beginning phases of adopting DevOps. Read More →

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