A Work Team Is Defined by Its Work

The Mission, San Francisco
  1. They would like to engage but they are busy — therefore frustrated because everyone else is apparently having a lot of fun. I remember that feeling. Right after moving to the US, I was super busy trying to deliver my first project while dealing with some remaining immigration paperwork. I needed to go to the Social Security Administration, which can take HOURS, and I just didn’t have enough time, and one day we had THREE parties at work. I was kind of pissed off. “Is this project THAT critical? Do they really need me at all? Am I the only one working here?”
  2. They don’t engage at all and just go home or do something else. “My laundry and my plants definitely need me more than the company.”
  3. They engage but nothing else happens. They attend the event, they do whatever they are supposed to do, and then they leave, with no practical difference.
  4. They engage TOO MUCH: “I don’t have anything to do today and I’m going to leave these suckers in a couple of months, so I’ll spend the rest of the evening just hanging out and drinking as much as I can on company money.”
  1. A tiny room with five tables, one for each of us, shitty $30 screens and $8 keyboards (hell, I still don’t know if their layout was even standard).
  2. Two hours every Friday afternoon, blocked off to do coding katas and present our work to the rest of the team.
  3. A fridge full of beer (sometimes paid for out of my own pocket, something nobody here could possibly believe).
  4. Nerf guns.
  5. A lot (A LOT) of work to be done.
  1. A mission. One for the team and for each of them.
  2. A challenging project with challenging conditions. A project where almost everybody could fail.
  3. Endless learning.
  4. Pride and love for our work.



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I’ve been into software engineering for the most part of my life so I have thought long and hard about it. Now I‘m just writing it down.