As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I’ve been doing a ton of personal reengineering, trying to get caught up on my personal and leadership practices for software development practices.
One of the things that struck me through my reading is that there are Agile techniques that I’ve been using for a while. One of those is trying to gather the team for lunch. Why? Well, we all have to eat… and it gives us a chance to have more time to interact. We rarely spend the whole lunch talking about the project, we talk about jumping out of planes, how crazy I think it is to jump out of a WORKING plane, gadgets, etc. However, we often slip into project conversations for a few minutes to ask a random question, or clarify something. It’s part of the randomness of the human condition.
I never gave it much thought, it was just something I did to make sure that the team was staying connected. It turns out that one of the foundations for agile development is improved, frequent communication. Alistair Cockburn recommends being close to each other in the office. While that wasn’t always possible it was generally possible to gather the team up to go to lunch together.
… hmmm, Come to think about it I frequently used IM to “gather the troops”… I wonder if that’s a supporting technology for agile development ;)