Thursday, November 17, 2016

Adding staff -- slowly

First, we have "Brooks Law", as given in the classic case study "The Mystical Manmonth" by Dr. Fred Brooks:

"Adding staff to a late project makes it later"

I was no more thinking about that idea, than I read this missive in a history of the Civil War that I am engaged with:

“The veterans looked across the open ground at the newcomers with complete and unconcealed skepticism and hostility. In every line of their bearing—in the set of their jaws, the tilt of their heads, the look about their eyes peering out from under those valued hatbrims—they expressed for all to see the age-old, impersonal, unformulated feeling of the veteran for the recruit:

We have had it and you have not, and until you have been where we have been and have done what we have done we do not admit you to any kind of fellowship.

Excerpt From: Catton, Bruce. “Glory Road.” This material may be protected by copyright.

OK, that might be tougher than the normal project team might be, but in my experience, until there is bonding over a common stress, there's not cohesion, and maybe not even functional integration.

So, as in war and most other things, to speed assimilation along, sometimes a bonding experience is needed. Thus, all the bonding games, etc, but it often works. Else, just put everybody in the deep end. Survival will do all that is necessary

And, did I mention virtual teams: there's really not a difference, not really.

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