Re: [agile-usability] Remote versus collocated teams.
- Owen Thomas wrote:
> Thank you William for your thoughts. I've addressed them below.I don't manage anybody, but I have coached both sorts of team. When I
> You say above that your teams are virtual. When you make this
> statement, are you saying that you manage several teams of collocated
> individuals that reside in their own central location away from a
> project 'hub' (excuse my ignorance in terms here), or are these
> virtual teams indeed virtual in the sense that they are composed of
> members who are not collocated in a central office? Where do the team
> members commonly reside? At home? In an office?
say virtual, I mean with the individuals scattered hither and yon (in my
case, out of homes or personal offices) but acting as a team via
screenshare, Skype, wikis, and other remote collaboration tech. Plus
regular in-person meetings.
These teams would all be more effective if they were in the same place,
but other factors prevent that, and they are sufficiently productive as
> Do you know of any employer who might offer me the chance to work fromNope. Sorry. Having people in the same time zone is crucial for
> where I live in Australia? I don't.
distributed agile teams, and all of my clients are US-based.
>Ok. Here we disagree. I imagine others have covered this sufficiently by
> The rant that follows is general, and not meant in reply to William's
> message above. It serves as an emotional basis to why I put up this
> topic in the first place.
> All this stuff about non-verbal gestures and coffee dispenser
> conversations is bunk!
now, but I'll say that having spent a lot of time trying different
things out with teams, I'm pretty confident of my opinion. I agree it's
probably not the best option for you, though.
- Here here Ron! Remote teamwork may be possible but it certainly
isn't ideal. Close collaboration without co-location is a
compromise, sometimes an essential one, but not one you'd advocate
as part of any methodology.
I sometimes like to think of this in terms of new business
startups. How many people would start a business and think, "I
know, let's base our development teams in multiple locations and
have the business owners of the product we're building in a
different place to the developers." For logistical reasons, sales
and other field-based teams maybe, for product development I think
--- In email@example.com, Ron Jeffries
> Hello, Owen. On Sunday, June 3, 2007, at 11:01:30 PM, you wrote:
> > I realise that many people aren't in my position such that they
> > want hard facts to decide. Many are going to trust the opinionsof other
> > people they may think have seasoned opinions, because theyhaven't got
> > the time or the interest to decide for themselves. However, ifJohn
> > Kern's business, as a case in point, can demonstrate that the usepossible,
> > communications tools to facilitate a remote team discussion is
> > then shouldn't the Agile community be a little less hard onremote
> > teaming?want
> Owen, even Jon said that together would be better. Why would we
> to recommend something that wasn't the best we know?
> Ron Jeffries
> The fact that we know more today, and are more capable today,
> is good news about today, not bad news about yesterday.