Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Software Engineering: Corporate Wormholes

Imagine you have two teams that are located in different offices. It's sad when you lose the ability to just walk up and talk with someone, especially when you notice that they're just walking by. I think spur-of-the-moment meetings are underrated these days. They can really help speed up your team velocity!

Although I can't take credit for the idea, I think the solution is what I like to call "corporate wormholes". Setup a computer at each office with an always-on video connection with the other offices. Hence, you can always see when there are people in the other office. You can chitchat when they walk by, etc. If you have 10 small offices, then you can reach out to all the offices quickly if it's important enough to interrupt them (which should be rare, of course). Naturally, you don't need a wormhole to every part of your organization. You only need them for teams that are working on the same thing, but at different localities.

In general, corporate wormholes are a great way to build close-knit teams that are forced to work very far from each other.

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