This post springs from something i see very often in projects I am involved with, namely that if everybody cares the team will reach a higher state and produce better products.
Caring – a long and painful road
This may sound simple and easily overcome but the reality is quite different from my observation.
If everybody on a team cares about whats being produced I promise you the projects goals will be fulfilled, and provide greater business value.
However getting there is a very long, and sometimes painful, road.
If team members do not care and let something slip it risks the hole project – and risk is something to be mitigated not created.
The team members not caring about the product is essentially dead weight.
Weight which the other members of the team needs to carry to reach goal – namely provide an amazing product!
Caring about something is a very powerful emotion, it makes people persuade others about politic views, religions, or apple products!
Image a team that cares so much about their product that they just want to tell everybody about how amazing its gonna be when it hits the streets.
If the product hits a road bump everybody will care so much about fixing the problem that they will use all of their knowledge, time, and resources in collaboration to get the product in that amazing state once again.
This team will also be the most beneficial seen from a business stand point.
The management behind the team can be 100% certain that the product will be produced with all the love and nurturing a software project needs!
And god help the individual which hurts the project, because the team will fight with tooth and claw to protect and ensure the product well-being.
If everyone in the team cares about every important aspect of it has a much higher probability of become a success and hereby becoming a profitable business.
Creating the caring team
First of all you need to ensure that you have team members able of caring.
If the team can work together and have the needed knowledge, skills, and resource coupled with caring they are likely to going the extra mile for the project.
For this to happen the team needs to have a clear view of the goals of the project – namely a vision.
Furthermore the team needs transparency, everyone in the team needs to know that each team member is caring there own weight and not just wasting their time waiting for the clock to reach 5pm.
If this transparency is not ensured it can be hard for team members to feel that everybody is doing their absolutely best possible to make this product amazing.
To create this transparency it is important to match expectations within the team.
This ensures the team have the same goals for the product and what the product needs to stand for.
This also highlights if some team members thinks it is okay to go for mediocre and not awesome.
Matching of expectations should be one of the first actions done within a team and should be a reoccurring event.
Caring, if not managed the right way, can lead to gold plating, analysis paralysis, and over designing.
However this can be minimized by ensuring transparency of the business aspects, because the product is not going to be amazing, from the customers view point, if it is not on time and within budget.
Everybody on the team needs to care about the product under construction.
A caring team, with the right knowledge, skill, and resources, will produce amazing products.
Amazing products which provides business value for the customer will inevitably generate profit.
So can you afford not to have a caring team?