TL;DR Thoughts and reasons behind dysfunctional software engineering teams.

TL;DR

What are the most common traits of a dysfunctional team?

  • Believers in “self-commenting code”.
  • Code review drama.
  • Nobody questions the status quo.
  • No bond with your boss.
  • Too many cooks in the kitchen for every single thing.
  • Layers and layers of useless managers.
  • Backlog clusterfuck.
  • The release process is only theoretical.
  • Product planning is apparently against “agile”.
  • Team balance doesn’t exist.
  • Glorification of overworking.
  • Blame culture and silos.
  • Last-minute vacations (unexpected absence is common).
  • Tasks & tickets are as clear as Covid lockdown rules.
  • Your Slack chanelofobia becomes a real thing.
  • Only key players are allowed to participate in discussions.
  • The feedback loop is the thing when you hear yourself on Zoom calls.
  • Trust no one!

Focus on the signs, first.

Believers in “self-commenting code”.

Code review drama.

Nobody questions the status quo.

No real bond with your boss — 1–1s, feedback, growth plan, help.

Too many cooks in the kitchen for every single thing.

Layers and layers of useless managers.

Backlog clusterfuck.

Release process is only theoretical.

Product planning is apparently against “agile”.

Team balance doesn’t exist.

Blame culture and silos.

Last-minute vacations (random absence).

Tasks & tickets are as clear as Covid lockdown rules.

Only key players are allowed to participate in discussions.

Your Slack chanelofobia becomes a real thing.

Glorification of overworking.

No trust

The point!

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Andrew Winnicki

Software Engineering Changemaker. Driving digital transformation and sharing experiences and thoughts from my journey. 20 years and counting…