A People Management Perspective on Self-Managing Teams

At Atomic, we describe our project teams as self-managing. I recently read The One Thing You Need to Know…About Great Managing, Great Leading and Sustained Individual Success with a group of others at Atomic. The book got me thinking more about that description of our teams and some different perspectives on self-management. Read more on A People Management Perspective on Self-Managing Teams…

Creating Psychological Safety Leads to Happy Teams

Have you ever loved being part of a team? It’s a great feeling. Often, it doesn’t even matter what you’re working on as a group. Everyone shows up to work with enthusiasm, and all members support one another. The feeling of being on the team makes you excited to go to work every day. You could be digging ditches in the rain, but as long as you get to do it with that team, it’s going to be a positive, inspiring experience. Read more on Creating Psychological Safety Leads to Happy Teams…

Six Ways to Ensure People Don’t Dread Your Meeting

Meetings fill a lot of our working days, yet most people dread them or don’t understand why they have to attend so many. I haven’t confirmed this with Google, but I think meetings are in the running as the subject of the most memes. (Spoiler: None say, “Please schedule another meeting!” without sarcasm.) I have a theory, though, that the people who hate meetings just have not attended many that are well-run and productive. Read more on Six Ways to Ensure People Don’t Dread Your Meeting…

Three Ways to Maintain Excellent Customer Experience During a Support Phase

During active projects, we rarely go more than a day or two without talking to our client via Basecamp, a phone call, or in person. Clients appreciate that amount of engagement, and at the end of the project, the relationship is very strong.

Then the project enters a support phase, and communication goes dark. The strong relationship you’ve built starts to fade.

Fast forward a year. That same client is ready for another round of development, but instead of reaching out to you, they shop around and find a new partner. Read more on Three Ways to Maintain Excellent Customer Experience During a Support Phase…

Project Team Roles at Atomic – The Tech Lead

Successful product delivery requires us to navigate overlapping, competing concerns across a broad spectrum of execution dimensions, all tied together via our tech lead role. This role is complex and multifaceted, requiring the people who hold it to balance a variety of needs and interests. Read more on Project Team Roles at Atomic – The Tech Lead…

Identifying Design & Development Implementation Potholes

The marriage of design and software implementation has been a positive thing for the user. At Atomic, we receive a lot of good feedback about the use of Human Centered Design, but the design process is really just the start. What brings designs to life is the way our poly-skilled teams work hard to avoid road bumps during implementation, ensuring a quality outcome for our clients. Read more on Identifying Design & Development Implementation Potholes…

Three Ways to Build Trust & Safety as a Team Leader

More and more studies have shown that the most effective teams are the ones whose members trust each other and feel “psychologically safe.” Psychological safety is when a person feels he/she is safe to take a risk and does not need to worry that the team will punish him/her for asking questions, admitting a mistake, or any offering a new idea. Read more on Three Ways to Build Trust & Safety as a Team Leader…

If You Build It, Will They Use It? Assessing Your Client’s Change Management Readiness

A software project can’t be called “successful” unless it’s implemented successfully. And believe it or not, there’s a lot that software consultants can do to help with successful implementation. It starts back in the initial planning stages, with an effort to understand as many facets of the unknown as you can. Read more on If You Build It, Will They Use It? Assessing Your Client’s Change Management Readiness…

Software Exposes People Problems that You Can’t Ignore

Image credit : Alan D Cirker (CC BY 3.0), via Wikimedia Commons

Software, and computers in general, are excellent at enforcing process. But process is often in direct conflict with people. So what happens when a new software system is thrust upon people? Frustration, revolt, and other negative consequences—a net loss for all involved.

Read more on Software Exposes People Problems that You Can’t Ignore…

Problems Happen; How Do You Deliver the Bad News to Clients?

We’d like it if things always went smoothly, but in life, they seldom do. This truth holds for custom software projects as well—we struggle with unforeseen bugs, scope creep, a third-party integration that doesn’t work, team velocity lower than expected, projects more complex than originally thought, etc. In these situations, it’s helpful to remember how to deliver bad news effectively, in a way that moves the project forward. Read more on Problems Happen; How Do You Deliver the Bad News to Clients?…