Imagine: You’re on a ship, sailing the endless ocean. You’ve been on this voyage for a while now. You don’t remember since when, and you’re not sure how much time will pass until you see land again. The weather report says it will be like this for a while. You keep going.
Are you on the “Corona” ship too?
We’re not used to these long periods of time. Remember deadlines? We used to live by them. We checked our velocity by deadlines.
No matter how you measure it, velocity is down. What did we do in the pre-corona days?
“Ah, we’re late again. We were sure we’ll have these features ready by now. We better push what we have now, and press forward with more features.
Quality? We’ll take care of that when we have time”.
We’ve been there, and we’ve paid the price. We called it “technical debt”, but let’s call it for what it is: short term wins, paid for by future slow down.
So why am I telling you all this?
Well, reality has stepped in and gave as a choice. Because of the slow down we can do one of two things: Use the less time we have to push what features we can, and throw quality even further out of the window. Staying on the ship, until the food supply runs out.
Or we can do something surprising – jump.
We can use the slowdown to invest in the future. For example:
- Automate the things we did a hundred time manually because we didn’t have the time.
- Pay up some technical debt.
- Add tests around that mess of a code.
- Refactor that mess.
- Learn some new skills (check my online courses).
Technical debt is an economic term. And investing when the market is down make sense both economically and technologically. When we go back to “normal”, velocity will pick up because your code, your tests and definitely you are better.
This is an opportunity. Don’t waste the time we’ve been handed.