Don't behave like a 2-year-old

Many software development teams seem stuck in the imitative stage, when it comes to business practices.

My son is 2 years old. As such, he loves to copy what he sees others do.

This morning he found his mother’s hair dryer, and held it pointing at my head (backwards, albeit) and making a “zzzhhh” sound with his mouth.

It occurred to me that he has absolutely no idea of the function of this device. I have no hair. And my scalp wasn’t wet, either.

He just knows that his mother points it at her head, and it makes that noise.

One day, perhaps in a year or two, I know he’ll begin to transition from the current imitative stage to the inquisitive stage, and begin asking “Why?” about everything, ad nauseam.

The sad thing is that many software development teams and professionals seem to be perpetually stuck in this imitative stage, when it comes to business practices.

Fibonacci story points. 2-week sprints. QA handoffs. PM approval for software releases. Centralized code reviews. Manual acceptance testing. GitFlow. Large Product Requirements Documents. Detailed, long-term roadmaps.

I see every one of these things implemented by teams who are stuck in the imitation phase of development.

Very few of these things are implemented by teams that have moved on to the inquisitive stage, and started asking “Why?” And the few that remain, are either being actively phased out, or remain for a very context-specific reason that actually makes sense.

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