Learn to say "no»
Senior developer Valera works as timlida on a large and important project for a large and important customer. Outside the window the noise hot summer, the dusty streets running about their business passers pigeons twist pirouettes in the vast Kazakh sky. Life is beautiful - a pilot launch is scheduled for the end of November, the team scored a good pace and is on schedule. And here Valera peripheral vision notices how Skype icon has a yellow dot - someone thought about it and wrote a message. This project manager: "Come to me ...»
Manager name Yerbol and he has to Valera prenepriyatneyshee news. At the customer's company changed CEO. He looked at the developed system, and decided that it is not safe enough. And now it requires the use of a digital signature is absolutely in all business processes with the addition of QR-codes to all generated documents. And while he made it a condition to do this without changing the terms of delivery systems. "Valerie, you need to solve the problem and enable additional functionality in the delivery. I'm sure you can. You're professionals! "- Yerbol voiced its position.
"Opachki!" - Flashed through my head Valera. He immediately offhand estimated that new features will require about three weeks of work of the whole team. After all, would have to partially rewrite engine business processes, plus tie EDS and QR-code on the system. Valera began frantically to think that the same answer to your supervisor.
Our hero is turned away for a moment, I thought, then returned to the original position, smiled and said: "Yes, no question, Yerbol! We have time. We're professionals! "Yerbol relieved and again pointed to himself, with some cool people he works. Valera was also pleased: he avoided conflict with management and reconciled the difficult situation. Especially since we have to agree with what executives say, right? They are smarter, and they have more experience.
Valera said "yes" and thus took on the obligation i>. The next day at the meeting Yerbol customer proudly announced that they are going to meet and implement new features, and not in terms of damage. The Executive Director, in turn, wrote a report to his superiors, which also assured everyone that in December will all start using a new and very secure system. That is, based on the words of Valera, many people began to build their plans and to promise something to other people.
And then the fun begins. Although Valera and said, "We're professionals!", In fact, he behaved unprofessionally. The fact that a professional is committed only when the entirely sure i>, that will fulfill them. Unlikely for the moment that he considered the decision in the office of Yerbol, his mind was born a new plan, which he understood in detail, it is now necessary to construct the work to implement more features for the same time. He just wanted to sound good and do not quarrel with your supervisor.
If very lucky, Valera with the team will be able to meet the deadline. And if you're lucky even more, even without strong overtime. But, in fact, the more likely other options. Very big chance that the timing would be disrupted and this would entail a violation of all agreements and a lot of unpleasant conversations between interested people (and maybe even penalties, God forbid). Either the team still has time, but at great cost in the form of a demoralized staff and piles of crutches and bad code in the system. And then it goes around comes around in the support and development.
Once again I want to emphasize that the decision was taken Valera unprofessional. But, fortunately, the format of the story allows you to go back and change something, what we later regret. So, we are back at the office at Yerbol.
Valera turned away for a moment, I thought, then returned to the original position, smiled and said: "No". Valera expected that after these words in his eyes flash fire Yerbol indignation, but Yerbol remained calm. In fact, he was a clever man, and he knew that his subordinates should i> to tell him "no" in certain situations. After all, why they took the job, that they get something better than their boss.
"I must say that in the same time frame, we can not implement additional functionality. Give me one day, and I will present to you the options to solve the problem "- continued Valera. Yerbol gave the nod and Valery gone to confer with the team.
The next morning Valera appointed meeting and in due time came to Erbol. Here is what he said: "Yesterday we sat down with the team and appreciated the new features in the 3 weeks of the whole team. Plus Week risks - total of four weeks. Risks lay not so much because the problem is known and we know how to do it. There's just a large amount of rework. If we had still to learn the technology, while the risks would increase significantly. Thus, the first solution to the problem - shift periods of four weeks. Or there is another way. We plan the same amount of time laid on the functional scan documents via in-line scanner. But the customer says that the devices themselves will they only spring. That is, we can rule out bekloga stream scanning, but instead implement new security mechanisms. A scan realize or support during or through supplementary agreement - this is how you treaty. And while we are on the previous period. »
They consulted another half an hour negotiating the details, and then went to the customer Yerbol. There conversation was surprisingly easy, and was coordinated with the exception of a variant of the graph of progressive scan and transfer of its implementation for the winter.
Happy Yerbol rode in a taxi to the office and thought about how good that their company has such professionals.
Know how to say "yes»
End of previous stories may seem happy ending. Valera said "no" and, together with Yerbol able to eliminate the threat looming on the company. But the project is not finished until the end of his need to implement a lot more functional, check everything and run to combat servers. Therefore, we will not rejoice prematurely, and see how events developed further.
After meeting with the customer, which has been agreed with the replacement option progressive scan for additional security features Yerbol again met with Valery. He told him of the decision and, in any case, said: "Now we will do it and put in the old time?" "Yes, put" - said Valera. We now know that Valera - professional. And his answer shows us that professionals also need to be able to say "yes." Having said that magic word, they take on the responsibility i> for the fact that it will be done.
But back to the story. Again flowed workdays. Team encodes new features, test and document. All was going well, but suddenly there was a small problem. In a large study, which hosted the meeting and discussed the architectural and design solutions, has started to act up Internet. He could have some time to work steadily, but then the connection was lost and had to wait a few minutes until it appears again. Since most of the resources of the team is in the cloud, it has become a real obstacle work.
Valera spoke with sysadmins and learned that the problem lies in the Wi-Fi-router that could not support a large number of compounds simultaneously. Valerie really like to solve this problem, and after dinner, met with one of the administrators named Victor. He described the situation and asked if he could fix it. "Yes, you need to change the router" - said Victor.
Valera, pleased that he had promised to solve the problem, was about to leave, but then he remembered the course of sociolinguistics, which he held in the university. It turns out that not every "yes" answer leads to Commitment man. In fact, the fulfillment of commitments includes 3 stages:
It should be say i>, that you will do something. It should really mean i> to do something. < it is necessary to do i>. So, in this scheme, Victor did not fulfill even the first paragraph. He confirmed that there is a problem and you need to change the router. But he said he would do it. Most likely, Victor forget about it once out of office. And the problem will not be solved for a long time.
Valera realized that the word "must", which used the Victor. There are words, the indicators that are used when a person recognizes the kind of something, but at the same time do not take responsibility. These include: "we must / should", "hope", "let's." For example: "We need to start going to the gym", "You have to go on a diet and start losing weight", "Let's use TDD in the next iteration." Man talks about it, but does not plan i> to do it. Typically, these phrases are uttered and forgotten after 5-7 minutes. Answer Viti appeared in the same category.
If Valera was not a professional, he would have satisfied with the response and left. But he decided to continue talking to Victor said clearly when and who will solve the problem. « you i> will solve this problem and change the router medium i>?» - Said Valera. "I have a lot of cases, it is necessary to conduct an audit of our storage and write a report to management. Therefore, the medium does not have time. Suggest a way out: I started the process until the purchase of the router, and on Thursday will set him in the office "- said Victor.
There is every indication to commit themselves. The man said that he would do specific case i> to specific date i>. And now he is in a situation where Valerie can come to him on Thursday and ask if the problem is solved. And Victor would feel very uncomfortable if he did not fulfill his promise.
But here, in the reply Victor has a flaw. The fact that it does not control the process of buying networking equipment. And when it comes to the person responsible for it, he can not refuse. Not approved the budget, there is a priority purchases - these are just some of the objective reasons that by Thursday, the router can not be. A professional should take responsibility only for what is completely under his control, and he is in does not depend on other people.
Valera, led his professional scent, and caught the problem in answering Viti. He talked for 10 minutes and finally stopped at the next solution. Victor, on the same day sends a request to the administrative department and as soon as get the answer, tell Valera when the router is purchased and when it finds it. That is, even though Victor alone and can not solve the problem but it will make the necessary steps to make it resolved as quickly as possible. He clearly described and available Valere is voicing its responsibility in this matter. The company has become more professional one.
Finally Valera reminded Vite one more thing. If there will be something unexpected and it hurt Vite in the installation of the router to the correct term, it must i> immediately notify Valera. In life everything happens and the entire department of system administration can get to the customer to solve urgent problems. And if it jeopardizes the fulfillment of obligations to other people, they must immediately be notified of this. Then they can adjust their plans and take other measures to eliminate possible trouble. Of course, in the case of the router will be the consequences of not the most serious. But professional applies to all his promises equally. Whether it's a version update Counter-Strike on the local server or deployment server infrastructure for the project throughout Kazakhstan.
After this memorable conversation Victor became more professionally relate to his duties. Network and server infrastructure of the company began to work flawlessly. And from time to time to them even started to organize tours schools and colleges to show the children how to work the technical department of a large and modern IT-company.
To be continued ...
P.S. Most of the ideas described in this article, I learned from the book by Robert Martin "Ideal programmer." They are superimposed on my own experience, and in the end I decided to tell about it in the form of a small fictional stories.