Strategy & Consulting

Solutions To Common Anti-Patterns A Tech Leader May Face

April 16, 2018

Stuart Arthur

Chief Technology Officer

Consumers are inundated with ads, so it’s vital that your ad catches the eye and immediately grabs interest.

Big ambitions but no budget or commitment to match

  • Due diligence prior to taking on a role or contract
  • Set clear expectations about tech budget / resources / hiring
  • Clear roadmap scenarios based on budget / resources / hiring
  • Escalate and highlight the promise versus current commitment

Stifled by fear from top execs and committees

  • Need to shield the team from these politics
  • Appoint someone who gets it to represent the team at board/committee level
  • Build confidence through customer feedback and traction
  • Keep the group onside and build more support / momentum inside the org

The ‘old guard’ blocking change

  • Endeavour to get to know the people blocking
  • Build an understanding of their motive
  • Try to move forward with support but move forward regardless
  • Create buy-in and support from more senior stakeholders / execs

Wooly and fluffy directions and desires from top execs

  • Involve top execs in co-creation of roadmaps
  • Ask direction questions that can be turned into SMART goals
  • Create story maps based on discussions and get sign-off
  • Keep the top execs closely involved during planning / review sessions

Perfectionism halting delivery

  • Explain the lean startup approach
  • Build a startup mentally and culture
  • Aim for quality and to solve challenges but to ‘test’ assumptions
  • Focus on solutions to problems not details of graphics / UI

Siloed ops and delivery (or other) functions

  • Establish metrics e.g. time from done to release is 6 weeks
  • Present systems issues and business impact to stakeholders
  • Run a trial with Ops engineers in product/agile team
  • Review new time from done to release

Agile teams being crippled by traditional management practices and business models

  • Highlight agile as a business imperative
  • Link it into any existing lean / continuous improvement activities
  • Start with small trials to gain some traction and facts
  • Bring ‘the business’ into the product/agile teams as sponsors (one team)

Uninformed non-technical committees driving technology decisions

  • Establish a technology strategy board (mixture of business and technical stakeholders)
  • Ensure that sign-off of new tech cannot be achieved without tech sign-off
  • Empower teams to have the power to make or inform tech choices
  • Build a clear tech roadmap that is signed off but can be evolved

Desire from execs for detailed estimates and costs for uncertain domains

  • Provide some stats about inaccuracies of traditional estimation techniques
  • Utilise forecasting techniques i.e. track cycle time, no. stories done over time
  • Use budgets as a constraint to solve a particular challenge
  • Break large programmes down into smaller deliveries to test assumption / market
  • Deliver consistently little and often and the requests may stop

You might also like...

Introducing Progressive Web Apps
Software Engineering
read article
October 6, 2019
Consulting Model Of The Future
Strategy & Consulting
read article
January 30, 2018
How User Centred Design Can Help Us Build Great Products
User Experience & Design
read article
February 21, 2018
Signs Of A High-Performance Team
Strategy & Consulting
read article
March 28, 2018
Consulting Model Of The Future
Strategy & Consulting
read article
January 30, 2018
The Impact Of AI Related Technologies
Software Engineering
read article
October 28, 2019
The Impact Of AI Related Technologies
Software Engineering
read article
October 28, 2019
Startup Thinking...
Strategy & Consulting
read article
October 27, 2019
You Don't Need Scrum, a Scrum Master or Kanban
Strategy & Consulting
read article
October 16, 2019
Let's create
something great!
work with us