Sunday, December 11, 2011

Starting a startup

I  worked with 5 companies earlier and have been through different processes and tools employed at each of my employment

Mostly there is always a great vision and wish. Still very often companies built  a total mess with too many of tools introduced  and multiple alternatives for every purpose available. Changes in management introduces more tools and processes that might hard land employees into difficulty.

Thought I would write about my thoughts on how we can  run an organization with simpler tools. I have limited knowledge so there could be better tools/alternatives.

Simplest commercial solution I could see is with "JIRA/Confluence" along with SVN. You could extend it with multiple helping tools.  Atlassian has good package for startups.

we can even experiment with free tools like  wiki software(media wiki etc) and tracking tools like Trac/ bugzilla. I am impressed with Trac. There are many providers who are very cheap. I liked repositoryhosting that provides a good platform to host our source code online.

But having multiple alternatives doing samething, having JIRA just to track bugs and other tools like CLARITY  or HP PPM is a good idea but personally I prefer not to do so.  Employees, specially in software development companies should focus on getting their stuff right most of the time and not with too many tools to learn/manage/update.

Adaptability that we gain by going with lean and agile is really great and it should always be supported with cleaner tools/processes with less learning curve and less effort by the team members.

Also realizing the fact that software development is not a machine made logic so treating employees like factory works will for sure not make the company great. Software creation is more artistic in nature and great implementations come from dedicated and undisturbed minds.  You always need to hire people with lot of filtering and once an employee is in, we just need to trust him to deliver and guide him to get comfortable with new environment, tools, processes so that he becomes productive.

Also just demanding something always never works. I have seen managers, who always try stupid project management theories. If an employee comes to you for help, turning against him on the same issue and demanding why it is not sorted out is the easiest way for the escapist manager.  I never wanted and will never want to become such a typical managers. Some time in the future these escapists will become obsolete.  A higher up employee should always be  a leader guiding and solving the impediments of the team members. Designations should be earned and from the team and not from the top. So just managing the top management and getting promotions etc might be a real shortcut many apply leaving many others disappointed, it might work to some extent but will not make great innovations develop and best of the team will never  happen for sure.

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