The latest new, cool tool comes along. Will you be allowed to use it? Probably not! So how can you change that?

This presentation looks at the introduction of new technologies at three companies, The Forward Internet Group in London (a start­up originally, now grown to 400+); MailOnline, the online version of the Daily Mail newspaper from London (a very old organization with an existing IT shop); and Outpace, a Silicon Valley startup.

In both cases, Programmer Anarchy was introduced. This managerless process (not unlike GitHub in its value propositions) empowered the programmers to make technology choices and to freely experiment with new technology. In the case of Forward, massive growth and profits ensued. In the case of MailOnline, re­development of core systems into new technology has been launched, and expectations significantly exceeded.

This presentation will touch on the various aspects of implementing Programmer Anarchy at MailOnline:

  • Team building through programmer training

  • Pilot project without managers, BA’s or dedicated testers

  • Reinforce the model with new HR structure emphasizing skills over titles

  • Create self­organizing teams of 5­8 developers (multiple such teams)

  • Charter teams with a specific project, and let them deliver

  • Avoid artificial schedule pressure

The intent is to provide a possible roadmap to get your latest technical toys moved into production systems. 

 
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Outline/structure of the Session

Covered in the abstract above.

Learning Outcome

Broadly appealing presentation with something for a variety of audiences:

  • Developers: Describes an environment that facilitates introduction of emergent technologies

  • Project Managers: Describes an alternative to traditional empowerment and the power of blended roles to support experimentation.

  • Business Managers/Owners: Describes a system that keeps the start­up culture of rapid delivery and daily innovation. 

Target Audience

Developers, Project Managers, and Business Managers/Owners

schedule Submitted 3 years ago

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comment Comment on this Proposal
  • Prasad
    By Prasad  ~  2 years ago
    reply Reply

    Hey Fred,
    looking forward for your talk. Is this implemented at portfolio level or at a project level?

    ~PP

  • Tathagat Varma
    By Tathagat Varma  ~  3 years ago
    reply Reply

    Fred - I went through your vimeo talk and found it very relevant on multiple counts. I am sure the talk will be a great addtion to Agile India. I am only trying to loud think if Scaling Agile adoption is the best track for it, or it fits in one of the other tracks. Do you have elements of scaling up that you implemented / experienced in the process of implemetning programmer anarchy?

    -TV

    • Fred George
      By Fred George  ~  3 years ago
      reply Reply

      I wouldn't say "scaling" as much as "introducing" new technology into a company. If you are starting at zero, I guess that is a kind of scaling. 

      Regardless, place on whatever track you feel is appropriate.

      Fred

  • Steve Ropa
    By Steve Ropa  ~  3 years ago
    reply Reply

    Hi Fred,

    Ok, this is a really interesting abstract.  I wonder about the motivation though.  Since this approach looks like it could accomplish so much more than just getting cool new toys (although I love the idea of cool new toys) maybe more people would attend if the other benefits could be emphasized as well?  

  • Joel Tosi
    By Joel Tosi  ~  3 years ago
    reply Reply

    Hi Fred,

        This is interesting - one quick question - is this an experience report, or a presentation?  That will help frame my further questions.

     

    THanks much,

    Joel

    • Fred George
      By Fred George  ~  3 years ago
      reply Reply

      It is both a presentation and an experience report. Fundamentally, it lays out actions for an organization to exploit "valley technologies"; these recommendations are based on what I have done at several different companies. 


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