Systems Run your Business, People Run your Systems

I’m a big How I Built This fan, and recently I listened through the OtterBox episode. One of the quotes (originally from E-Myth) that Curt Richardson (The Founder of Otterbox) talks about that struck him was:

Systems Run your Business. People Run Your Systems.

If I had to sum up the goal behind the current DevOps revolution, that’d be it. “DevOps” is the attempt by the Software industry to systematize what we do. If I had to sum up the why behind the why behind the work I do, it’d be to help software teams systematize their process. I’ve helped teams systematize their process and have seen the productivity gains that arise from that work, and I believe enterprise software teams can benefit from that as well.

Systematization has several parts:

1. Ensuring relevant information is easily visible and communicated.
2. Ensuring the methodology used to develop software (Scrum, XP, Waterfall, RAD) is the best fit for the team and is molded to the culture of the team.
3. Automating and molding software creation processes to the business to ensure software creation is low friction (this is where I spend my time)
4. Ensuring Build and Delivery Systems are seamless and automated (CI/CD)
5. Ensuring the feedback loop from customer to team is effective; allowing the team to respond to change.

For your team, or your larger organization, how are you doing? Are all those aspects systematized? Can you say that each part flows into the others without friction? Do your systems allow your team to move as fast as possible to respond to change?

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