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April 12, 2016

[Case-Study] Who stole our cheese?

A Little Know-Who

In the Divided States of Unfairy Land, there is this much celebrated transport company that embraces change every few years to keep up with its competitor.


Fast-Forwarding The company's Journey

The company hires raw talent for their IT division. Their reasoning? IT is only an enabler and not their core division of their business. As years passes by, they find a few jerks in the development team and make them the boss for the rest. A few years goes by and the top management sees Agile as the new market buzzword and bets on it. When discussing matters with the middle management which by now is at least half-filled with the jerks, a decision was made to onboard Agile coaches to bring about magic. In this pursuit, they go about hiring good for nothing but certified coaches.

The certified Agile coaches and he fatty middle management executives aka jerks form a nexus and decide to while away years and burn the companies money; after all cooking up some rosy metrics in all the idle time they have ain't a rocket science.

However, metrics is only a tool. And any tool can be abused. After a few more years the top management wakes up to the question from the CEO, "Who stole our cheese?". In their endeavours to find an answer to that question, they hit a hard realisation that with all the rosy metrics the business value could still be nil/zero and that is because metrics can be cooked up.

In the market, yesterday's competitors of the company have become their competition today. The top management is super stressed. Tired and yet with some hopes of the fatty middle management they seek their answers. The jerks seek time, conduct day-long meetings among their peer group and come to a conclusion that the development teams are poor or have raw talent and cry for the need for Agile Engineering Coaches.

The top management gives a go-ahead, sanctions budget for it all and goes about hiring Agile Engineering Coaches aka Software Craftsmanship Coaches.

It's your turn now

  1. What do you expect to happen next? What is your experience (direct and/or empirical)? 
  2. Do you think anything has gone wrong along the company's journey? If so what do you think has gone wrong? What do you think the company could have done differently to have been in a better shape than what it is today?


I'm looking forward to hearing your thoughts/experience in the comments section below :)