Build a DevOps Culture Without Any Money, Talent, or Resources

Organizations that have built a positive DevOps culture have transformed as part of a continuous and ongoing journey. The members of the organization should have a noticeable difference in how they behave presently versus how they behaved in the past. If the ultimate goal is to change the way the entire organization functions and operates, that means two things: changing the way everyone in the organization thinks about how they work and changing the way people behave.

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Tristan Gebbia Transfer Just Proves Transfer Rules Are Dumb

So you’ve made it out of fall camp, and you’re not named the starter? What do you do? You transfer to somewhere that could use a quarterback like you next year! But make sure to do it fast enough so that you’ll actually be able to take advantage of the arcane collegiate rules system. While coaches may not intentionally be making life difficult for players wanting to see the field at all costs, the window for transferring is only open until the 12 day of an academic calendar. I’m sure there have been reasons for this number, but essentially it’s an arbitrary date.

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DevOps Culture Anti-pattern: Manual Processes

Automation is the force multiplier that makes a DevOps effort so powerful. While it requires the technical skill and know-how to create frameworks for automating processes in an organization, an automation-first mindset is not easy to start out with. The rest of the DevOps anti-patterns are all about different modes of thinking and this one is no different.

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DevOps Culture Anti-pattern: Information Hoarding

All of the previous cultural pitfalls I discussed have been focused on systemic issues with organizations, teams, or groups of people. This is truly the one that requires individual effort to defeat. Even I have to be intentional about sharing what I know that would make others on my team have the same successes. This differs from the Tribal Knowledge Anti-pattern in that organizations create and force single threaded resources. This forces people to “stay in their lane” which creates hard boundaries in what people know how to work on. Information hoarding usually comes from an individual place of fear and insecurity.

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DevOps Culture Anti-pattern: Quality Post-Development

In 2017, I took a very hard look at the issue we caused for Quality Assurance teams I worked with. By automating many Operations tasks, we did not speed up the whole development effort of the projects we worked on. The flow of work through an entire system is the only metric that matters to project leaders and clients, not that one particular piece is better. We had unintentionally created a new, bigger bottleneck by not supporting our QA team properly with what they needed to succeed.

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DevOps Culture Anti-pattern: Centralized Decision Making

“It is better to ask for forgiveness than permission.” A statement like that is pervasive in an organization that follows a decentralized command and control structure. As organizations become more complex, it is nearly impossible for any single person to fully capture detailed information in making decisions. Yet, many companies still try to run significant decision making authority through single threaded resources.

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