In the spirit of Goldratt’s understanding of metrics, “Tell me how you are going to measure me and I will tell you how I will behave,” here are some questions I ask myself when I play the role of a Technical Lead.
Picture of Einstein figurine taken from Dunechaser’s Flickr stream under the Creative Commons Licence.
- Have I fostered a learning environment? Do people feel safe to make mistakes, and more importantly, learn from them and share them with the rest of the team?
- Have I fostered an attitude of continuous improvement? Can people talk openly about what they see on the project, determine what impact it has or how people feel about it, and encourage more of it (if it’s a good thing) or try something different (if it’s less than ideal). Do people feel empowered to do things without feeling like they need authorisation every step of the way.
- Does the development team collaborate well with the other parts? Do they talk to other people with respect, and do they try to involve them as much as possible where it makes sense?
- Does the development team balance the needs of the business with the demands of the technology and toolset? Are they doing what’s right for the business in the long term? Do they share the same vision?
- Do I act as I say? Even though this sounds obvious, I’ve seen many people fail at this and, as a result, the non-verbal cues that conflict with verbal cues and confuse the team.
And of course, this resource is a useful one too.