Are your agile teams busy fighting fires and don't really have as much time for strategic initiatives don't have as much capacity to really delight their customers?

We often find this becomes more and more of a challenge.

The longer a product has been in existence over time, technical debt increases, we spend more time fixing defects, tackling dependencies.

For those, for other teams, manual workarounds, environmental inconsistencies, right?

We often don't address this technical debt because we're overwhelmed with new feature work where we really are trying to delay our customer.

But in the meantime the band aids grow and grow and I've seen teams that spend 80, sometimes even 100% of their capacity fighting these fires.

I recommend teams quantify two things to avoid this.

First, how much of your capacity do you spend on that operations work? Really quantify it/ Be able to give people a percentage.

And secondly, what direction is the accumulation of your technical debt really trending?

If it's trending up then even if we don't feel underwater right now, I guarantee you will in the future.

So once we've got the answers to these two questions now we can start working on solutions and communicate our strategy to really stabilize that operations work.

That often involves things like strategies like automating testing into plants, creating code standards so that we avoid that.

Spaghetti code automating manual workarounds and when we do this, we can spend more time on delighting those customers in the long run

About the Author

I aim to make the planet happier, one organization at a time. I believe we should love what we do and the teams we work with. Through leadership and team coaching, my goal is to create great work cultures and help people find joy every day. This naturally results in more creativity, innovation and productivity.

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