devRant is awesome, but Disney also manages to light-up my day.
This is how Wall-E became a beloved member of our team, and helped me put a smile on my face throughout a very frustrating project.

It all started in a company, not so far far away from here, where management decided to open up development to a wider audience in the organization. Instead of continuing the good-old ping-pong between Business and IT...

'not meeting my expectations' - 'not stated in project requirements'
'stuff's not working - 'business is constantly misusing'
'why are they so difficult' - 'why don't they know what they really want'
'Ping, pong, plok... (business loses point) ping, pong'

... the company aimed to increase collaboration between the 2 worlds, and make development more agile.

The close collaboration on development projects is a journey of falling and getting back up again. Which can be energy draining, but to be honest there is also a lot of positive exposure to our team now.
The relevant part for this story is that de incentive of business teams throughout these projects was mainly to deliver 'something' that 'worked'. Where our team was also very keen on delivering functionality that is stable, scalable, properly documented etc. etc.
We managed to get the fundamentals in place, but because the whole idea was to be more agile or less strict throughout the process, we could not safeguard all best-practices were adhered to during each phase of a project. The ratio Business/IT was simply out of balance to control everything, and the whole idea was to go for a shorter development lifecycle.
One thing for sure, we went a lot faster from design through development to deployment, high-fives followed and everybody was happy (for some time).
Well almost everybody, because we knew our responsibility would not end after the collection of credits at deployment, but that an ongoing cycle of maintenance would follow. As expected, after the celebrations also complaints, new requirements and support requests on bug fixes were incoming.
Not too enthusiastic about constantly patching these projects, I proposed to halt new development and to initiate a proper cleaning of all these projects. With the image in mind of a small enthusiastic fellow, dedicated to clean a garbage-strewn wasteland for humanity, I deemed "Wall-E" a very suited project name. With Wall-E on board, focus for the next period was on completely restructuring these projects to make sure all could be properly maintained for the future.
I knew I was in for some support, so I fetched some cool wall papers to kick-start each day with a fresh set of Wall-E's on my monitors. Subsequently I created a Project Wall-E status report, included Wall-E in team-meetings and before I knew it Wall-E was the most frequently mentioned member of the team. I could not stop to chuckle when mails started to fly on whether "Wall-E completed project A" or if we could discuss "Wall-E's status next report-out". I am really happy we put in the effort with the whole team to properly deploy all functionality. Not only the project became a success, also the idea of associating frustrating activities with a beloved digital buddy landed well in our company. A colleagues already kickstarted 'project Doraemon', which is triggering a lot of fun content. Hope it may give you some inspiration, or at least motivate you to watch Wall-E!

PS: I have been enjoying the posts, valuable learnings and fun experiences for some time now. Decided to also share a bit from my side, here goes my first rant!

  • 7
    That's a good way to get business-minded individuals on board. This is a cool way of approaching an otherwise frustrating topic inside of companies.

    As a WALL-E fan, solid first post, welcome to devRant :)
  • 5
    @junon Agreed. It’s cute, too!

    Great first post.
    You’ll fit in well here.
  • 1
    @junon, @Root,

    Thanks for the thumbs up, with the new avatar I am definitely in for a great time here!
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