The uphill battle of prioritising technical debt

Prioritise technical debt by translating it into the language of business. By framing technical debt as cost we have an easily understandable metric we can use to rally for support.

After all, if technical debt does not hurt the business in any way, why should anyone care?

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Pillow driven monitoring and alerting

We have vast options for monitoring and alerting. But there’s a simple rule to decide if your monitoring setup and alerts make sense.

If you’re deciding which alerts you want to establish, ask yourself: Does this help me sleep at night?

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How your startup can survive technical debt

How can your early stage startup use technical debt to survive and thrive? How does technical debt in young startups look and where does it come from?

It’s hard to avoid technical debt completely but you can manage it and use it to your advantage. Let us have a look how technical debt is created in startups and how you can keep it in check even when your company is in hyper growth.

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My first year of blogging

It was a year of many firsts. I started this blog, spoke at a conference, started a podcast amongst other things.

This is my year in review including the most interesting statistics of this blog itself.

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Technical debt is an organisational dysfunction

Looking back over the last 8 years I almost exclusively worked on legacy code and technical debt.

The difference between technical debt and clean software is a difference in degree, not in kind. Only when circumstances change does our interpretation of the code flip from good enough to technical debt.

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Make better predictions, stop estimating

Over half of all software projects are late or over budget. But isn’t late only a failed expectation, an expectation solely based on a team’s estimate? Is your team confronted with the questions of when will it be done or how much will it cost? We tend to respond to these uncomfortable inquiries by sticking our heads together and coming up with an educated guess.

Maybe there are easier, more transparent ways to make predictions about our software releases?

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The dark side of KPIs

In our complex world KPIs can give us a false sense of control. They ignore the chaotic nature of our lives and reduce humans to numbers.

What could we achieve if we acknowledged all sides of our humanness?

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Crafting a lean roadmap

Traditional roadmaps make too many assumptions which causes miscommunication, wastes time and effort and renders you unresponsive to changing circumstances.

The idea behind Lean is to reduce waste. Let’s make our roadmaps less wasteful and create a lean roadmap!

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Good intentions make bad roadmaps

What makes a good roadmap? More is always better! More milestones, more details, more predictions. That was my naive approach to creating roadmaps for a while. I didn’t realise how counterproductive most of that was.

A tweet from Janna Bastow last year inspired me to question my simplistic concepts.

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Anxiety in product development

Over the last year I learned to recognise and work on my own anxiety. It also lead me to recognise anxiety in others.

Soon I realised this does not only affect other people but also organisations and processes. Let me introduce you to anxiety driven development.

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How to measure technical debt

In my years as a software engineer I was always drawn to the shiny new things. But time and time again I got confronted with code ridden with technical debt. If you are working in tech you probably heard of technical debt.

For product managers it is the sword of Damocles alluding delayed projects and rejected feature requests. For engineers it can be a tremendous source of frustration and reason to quit jobs and move on. Why is technical debt so widespread and why is it so hard to beat?

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Common product owner anti-patterns

Product owners need a diverse skill set to be successful. Your past experience, your current organisation and the specific industry make the requirements to your job unique. Nevertheless there are some common pitfalls and anti-patterns which many product owners unwillingly fall into. This short list of product owner anti-patterns hopefully helps you to avoid these common errors.

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Kanban as an evolution of Scrum

In agile teams the use of both Scrum and Kanban is widespread. What is the difference between Scrum and Kanban? At what point does it make sense to use Kanban over Scrum?

This article helps you identify the limitations of Scrum and when it is time to break with the rules. It outlines how Kanban can be a natural evolution for Scrum teams.

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