I read this great article by Kevin Dunne for VentureBeat and I just had to share the wisdom!
In every team of developers, you will definitely come into contact with at least one or more of these people. In fact, you may even be one of these people! Here’s a list of five types of problematic personalities and how to deal with them.
- The Cowboy
He’s the free-spirited creative type, who just cannot seem to work under the structure of modern development teams. He pushes off estimations, plans, meetings, and documentation and prefers to work organically, which can mess up planning and team-based deliverables.
What to do: Firstly, you express that Agile Manifesto values the right mix of process and controls as much as it values speed. Secondly, you can start to use test driven developments (TDD) or behavioral driven developments (BDD), to increase transparency, which would force him to have more accountability.
- The Tardy Teammate
She is the smartest coder you got, but cannot seem to produce the results by the deadline. She’s great at coding, but not so great at organizational skills or focus.
What to do: You can require your team to produce demos of their work during the sprint cycle; partner her up with a fast developer and hope she learns some tricks; introduce project management tools that make tasks easier to track, organize, and complete, such as Jira Agile, which can also alert her if she’s falling behind schedule; offer positive reinforcement for delivering on time; or you can learn to live with it, especially if you have adopted Continuous Deployment practices, where the team releases code as it is ready. That way, you can still release the majority of features on time, while not forcing the team to wait for those developers still in progress.
- The Meeting Misser
Self-explanatory by his name, this guy continuously misses standups, retrospectives, and other important team meet-ups, leading to gaps in his information.
What to do: Make sure that all team meetings are crucial and that they can’t be handled instead by using collaboration tools or hallway meetings. Status updates can be delivered through Agile ALM and project management tools and you can divide larger teams into smaller ones, which encourages casual collaboration. When meetings are absolutely necessary, have an efficient meeting leader who sticks to the agenda, ensuring that no time is wasted.
- The Silent Skeptic
He’s quiet, and comes across as disinterested and unapproachable. He’s either really shy and introverted or unhappy.
What to do: Reach out to him one-on-one because he may be uncomfortable to share his ideas to a group or use tools that allow anonymous feedback. Talking with him may also uncover other issues he may be having. Make sure the louder teammates don’t drown out the voices of the quieter ones. Reward team performance to motivate him to participate as well as clearly expressing to him the requirements of adapting to collaborative Agile and DevOps processes—and the ramifications of not doing so.
- The Metrics Manager
She’s the one who loves spreadsheets and organizations to the point that she micromanages and sidetracks the team.
What to do: Try to tie her concerns to a particular business driver – such as product quality, user experience, or customer satisfaction, using well-defined Agile metrics (such as NPS for customer satisfaction) or bring in an outside voice, such as an Agile coach, who can show managers more modern metrics approaches for development.
InfoGraphic: 10 things CIOs need to know about agile
With these tips you can take a dysfunctional team and turn them into a diverse, fun, and powerful team that is happy and productive!