December 10th, 2021

Failing to scale the planning after on boarding new team members

After onboarding new team members the need for organization, roadmaps, and planning increases. A competent team of 5 to 7 is completely capable of self coordinating. So as I scaled the team past this number the need for coordination increased significantly, and I failed to equip the team with the tools and planning necessary to succeed. Once the problem was understood we increased the frequency of development team syncs to a daily occurrence.

When I worked at USAA I was on two separate teams that had very capable SCRUM masters that in retrospect made the development process smooth and less chaotic. In my next project one of the initial 5 hires will be a highly qualified SCRUM master.

Also, as someone who loathes management overhead I fell into the trap of trying to keep that artificially low; which was ultimately detrimental to the team. When the team increased to 12 there begins to be a major breakdown if there is no centralized project management or sprint planning. Rachel Chu stepped into this role when I failed to be an effective planner.