Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Keeping Software Developers in the Flow By Combing Meetings

Click to read reviews or buy Peopleware
In their book Peopleware, Demarco and Lister talk about the importance of giving developers large blocks of time to get let them get "in the flow" and wrap their heads around a problem. Continual distractions like meetings, phone calls, and reading emails break the train of thought and it may take tens of minutes to get concentration back on the deep technical issues. Today I took action on their concept.
On my team we have a weekly book discussion time, where each of us gives a summary of their current technical book. (Our current books are jQuery in Action, Code Complete, Hibernate in Action, and Domain Driven Design Quickly). We meet on Wednesday at 2:30pm, but this breaks the concentration of my developers - we have to stop our work, check which conference room it's in, so we are combining our book discussion time with our weekly team meeting to remove one interruption of our time. I'll post later how this works.

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