Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Worthless processes

When reviewing a write-up or new process/project proposal, a filter that I will apply is "Does this make a difference?".

Let's say one of your team was asked to write up a plan for "managing execution risk", and they wrote a document describing a process for doing this. After you read the document, you decide that while it all makes logical sense, it really will not make a difference. For example, tracking how many lines of code are written each day makes no difference. Who cares? Its business outcomes that matter.

As a CTO, it is your job recognize tasks that don't make a difference, and tell your team that they can stop doing. If something is worthless, say so. Or go one step further, and ask your team to tell you tasks they believe are not useful or optimal. Think of it as spring cleaning. Some tasks are not negiotable and are in fact important for compliance reasons (ie Sarbanes Oxley). But if its internal driven, reexamine it. Our teams are so busy, they'll appreciate the time savings.

So, what processes/tasks are your team doing that you can throw away?

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