I met my friend the next day. He appeared to be very enthusiastic and curious today. He said, “Ebin, after our conversation, I spoke to two of my friends in IT industry. They don’t agree with you! One of them said, “It is very hectic, high pressure and mental torture.” Second one said, “We have strict and unrealistic deadlines, most of the times we don’t even know what to do and what problem to solve and all blames comes to me.” Does it mean that, you happen to work for a super cool company with great policies? Most of the companies out there are not so liberal and cool?”
I smiled and asked him, “Did you ask them about the other advantages/facilities I mentioned yesterday such as, internet, great pay, you tube, social media, WhatsApp, coffee/tea, etc..?”
He replied, “Of course yes. I reminded both of them about that. They partially agreed and said, “We have all that but who has time to think about all those. We are living inside a pressure cooker.”
Then I mentioned, “Okay; that sets a good context for me to introduce what I do. “I work as an Agile coach. Even though people had lot of freedom and so many facilities; unfortunately most of them are not able be present to that. They live in a rabbit hole. By the way, did you probe your friends, to understand more about their challenges? What lead them to such a situation?”
He was waiting to get that question, “Yes, I did. This is what I understood,
- Unrealistic deadlines and targets: Organization always has high expectations, much more than they can accomplish.
- Communication issues: Customer is not to be seen at all till they deliver the product. All of a sudden they appear just to say “This is not what we want”. They never say what they want. Even if someone manages to talk to the customer and understand what they are expecting, they keep changing that. “It is like shooting a moving target.”
- Corporate politics: End of the year we are compared with other team mates to rate our performance. So we not only focus on highlighting our work but also suppress others work. Since we have to compete with each other, within the team, no much trust and relationship.
Overall I felt that their morale is down and they are demotivated and tired. I also asked about Agile coaching since you mentioned that yesterday. The laughed and said we also have some “jokers” in our company called Agile Coaches. They pour oil to the fire. Always come and increase our burden in the name of Agile.”
That was provoking. J
I interrupted, “You seem to have done a great research by now. Most of what you said is very valid. You are a great communicator. You are qualified to become a “Product Owner”. Let me share my perspective about the story.
Hey, my CEO, Neena (my wife) is calling. Hang in here, will come back soon.”
Stay tuned to know “Why Agile software development is still fun!”.