RE: Handling developers, "the zone" and other myths

Subject: RE: Handling developers, "the zone" and other myths
From: "Harold B. Gill" <hal -at- web500 -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Sun, 2 Jun 2002 18:10:16 +0200

Thanks for the comments below about using IM. My experience is as
In November 2000, before the work visa came through, I was working for
my Danish company from my apartment in Pittsburgh. I actually had better
communication then when I could use the Instant Messenger to have
simultaneous conversations with five of the developers at the same time.
Furthermore, they actually worked better together over in Copenhagen!

When I showed up in person a month later, this no longer worked. I had a
certain novelty and authority that had their interest when I was just a
pop-up message on their screen. When I arrived in person, I became just
one more person that they could ignore. It took a while to realize it
and there is no way now to "go back".

In my company, we just act "as if", meaning we don't buy into the
developer attitude. I think that is important...I treat what I view as
"unconstructive attitudes" as "cute" and then dismiss them rather than
reacting to them as though they are the end of the world when it comes
to getting thing done. They could be "end of the world" show-stoppers if
I were to act toward them as though they were worthy of
acknowledgement...but by not "buying in"...somehow the attitudes have a
hard time taking root.

It's a lot like dealing with two year olds...introducing limits and it's
a process. One of the important principles is never to tell anyone that
it is like working with two year olds. All of us have to feel that we
are respected and treated professionally...and that tends to get people
acting in the way that they are treated. Funny how it works!

All the best,
Hal Gill
Technical Editor
Web500 A/S

-----Original Message-----
From: Susan W. Gallagher [mailto:susanwg -at- ix -dot- netcom -dot- com]
Sent: 2. juni 2002 17:53
Subject: RE: Handling developers, "the zone" and other myths

So I started using instant messenger. Invariably, after
we'd typed three sentences back and forth, the developer
got up and came over to my desk, but it kept them happy,
so WTF, y'know.

Sometimes, life makes absolutely no sense at all.

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