Thursday, November 18, 2010

The results are in: In-house software craftsmanship day




On Friday Nov 12, we hosted an in-house "software craftsmanship day".  The format was similar to many of the software conferences I have attended, with multiple tracks, some more technical than others.
The schedule and session notes are in my previous blog post.
The raw retrospective notes are on the learning group's google site.
The event was an unqualified success, based on feedback from the participants.  Some of the most valuable things we found:
  • Relationships: getting everyone talking to (and pairing with) people on other sub-teams is an end worth pursuing by itself.
  • Sharing knowledge: having different people pair on hands-on exercies spread out some of the micro-patterns that people follow in their day-to-day work.
The feedback was entirely positive and constructive.  In my experience, people here are not at all shy about sharing criticism, so I took that at face value.
I believe the two main keys to success were...
  • Preparation: most of the people who hosted sessions did a dry run with a handful of people first, and adjusted their presentation and delivery.
  • Food!  Having grub for everyone (donuts in the morning and a big lunch mid-day) kept us all together and underlined the importance of the event for all participants.
I'll chat more about the event in the google software craftsmanship group.
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