Why dev teams are like football

Dev teams are like football: the paparazi, the glamorous wags. But also the (not quite so glamorous) stats.

Football has stats such as the proportion of games won when a particular player plays. Great! So whats it got to do with software development?

Well, large dev teams often split into two. And if people slowly rotate (e.g. if two people swap teams every sprint) then we can get some awesome stats: the number of successful sprints for each person in the teams!

The more randomised the rotation the more meaningful the stats. And rotation promotes knowlege sharing. Some businesses favour rotation even if they don’t chase metrics.

It’s the Moneyball approach (which revolutionised baseball) but better. It does for teams what A/B testing does for products.

The stats provide useful feedback to team members about how they’re doing – a key part of learning (and, of course, learning is a key driver of a company’s success).

Rotation meets random. Don’t underestimate it!


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