Working as a team with programmers

Working as a team with anyone is very critical. But, the problem is that most people are not team players. Let me rephrase. Those who work for fancy large companies by definition have to be team players or they will get fired immediately. However, those who can’t cut it with a fancy job, work for smaller companies and usually do not have adequate team playing skills.

The problem is, that without team play, programming work cannot get done. As a manager, you need to coordinate with workers to check their work. If you can never schedule time to see them, how will you check their work? If two programmers are working on different parts of the same project, they need to coordinate to make sure they finish at the same time with work that has been checked.

Most programmers at smaller companies have no clue how to be a team player, so the trick is to manage them. I fantasized about sending programmers out to get samosas at a designated time. That way they could get used to getting work done at a specific time. Of course there is nothing technical about samosas, but the being on time aspect would be the critical factor. If the programmer was assigned to have samosas on the manager’s desk at 3pm and just didn’t do it, the programmer would get in trouble.

My experience with programmers is that they just don’t do things. You ask them to do something and they don’t. You ask them again and they don’t. You pester them day and night for a few days and suddenly they produce results. Unfortunately, if you run a company with 25 people, you will not have time to run around bugging everyone day and night. It will tire you out. So, the solution is to train people on simpler tasks how to communicate their progress, and get things done by the deadline every single time.

Training people to “touch base” as Americans say and get things done on time will make your BPO amazingly better than the others. Most workers at outsourcing gigs just don’t care, just don’t get back to people and just don’t finish work on time or finish it correctly. If you aspire for greatness, you can achieve it, so have someone get you some samosas today! But, the secret is in the tamarind sauce!

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