Building a goal-oriented software development team

Have you ever thought about successful IT businesses? Why have they succeed when many other have failed? What is their secret ingredient? You have probably heard stories about CEOs, who were spending thousands of dollars to hire the best managers ever. Maybe, they have spent even more to buy the newest hardware for their developers. But anyway they failed. So, what were they missing? The answer is – the team!  You always have to be ready to face the challenge of finding the right team. Not a talented individual, not even 2 or 3 of them. A well-organized team always brings your plans and ideas to life. Browse through the top companies – they are spending so many hours/day/weeks interviewing experienced and goal-oriented guys. But they usually hire few of them – those, who match the team perfectly. And that it the secret!

We would like to share with you our experience with building result-oriented and friendly teams within our projects. As far as you can see, we have a lot of completed projects in our portfolio. And this couldn’t be reached without well-managed and project-dedicated teams.

Conduct a cultural interview

soft-skillsAt Blackthorn Vision, we’re really interested in hiring the most experienced and talented developers. We set the bar high – usually, we’re looking for Mid/Senior programmers and give them an opportunity to learn from their colleagues. Our projects are challenging so that each developer can improve his/her skills and to grow from Mid to Senior, to become a Tech or Team Lead.

But we’re 100% sure that developer’s soft skills are important as hard skills. That’s why our interviews are not as official and boring as many companies conduct. And it’s all about our open-minded policy – all the doors at Blackthorn Vision are widely open. As a result, we hire those personalities, who’re able not just to write a good piece of code, but who’re able to become a part of the team – to communicate clearly, to avoid conflicts and to keep up a team spirit. That’s why our team members have a lot of common. Companies who get developer hiring right are extremely rare. Learn how.

Hire mentors

The word Mentor in magazine letters on a notice boardYou need the specialists who could expand your business with outstanding value. This value is definitely not just about experience. This value is not even about the money. It’s about the people you work with. And believe our experience – as long as you have mentors within your team, you can be sure that their teammates are 1. inspired, 2. able to grow from inexperienced developers to successful outcomes. These mentors shouldn’t be tech leads, they shouldn’t be a ‘rock stars’. Somehow, mentors have to light up the team with bright ideas and inspiring way of implementing them in real life.

Interesting fact – it’s rather difficult to recognize ‘mentor’ during an average technical interview. And this is an outcome to previous paragraph – ‘cultural interview’. Being an experienced manager, you’ll be able to recognize this leader, mentor just during unobtrusive talk. Just take your chance to hire the mentor!

Engage the team with challenging tasks and friendly atmosphere

13041386_1084720324950935_8602259116422534409_oNo one wants to spend their lives doing boring tasks. Especially developers. So it’s extremely important to fill up team’s workflow with challenging tasks and manage them in time. Also, we’re sure that nothing is more important that finding a common language with our customers. It is the top requirement for having the efficient cooperation and expected results at the end of every day as well as at the end of the project. When the team is able to understand the requirements and expectations, it can work even more effective. That’s why we don’t hide our programmers from clients – both of them are able to Skype with each other, to schedule meetings and even to visit each other. Yeah, for our teams it’s a common practice – to have real meetings with a customer from time to time. We support such communication and always happy to meet clients in our cozy and contemporary office. Thus, we strongly recommend project managers to make the communication between development team and clients as transparent as possible. You should do this to engage the team into the project and make them inspired with tasks

Always listen to your team

Experienced managers know that teamwork is essential to delivering best-in-class software. They also admit that within the team “we” is more important than “I”. And sometimes engaged teammates are more important than schedule, deadline and other terms from managers’ vocabulary. You have to understand that your team is not just a group of boring developers – they’re people whom you trusted the whole project. And it’s a winning argument in the favour of a development team. As a manager, you have to understand that people who are involved in development process usually know better, what should be done, what are the issues and so on. So, their advice are always have sense. At Blackthorn vision, our approach involves qualitative and effective communication between the team, manager and client at all stages of cooperation. We usually start developing projects from the scratch – we gather requirements and determine expectations altogether. It helps in further development a lot.

Invest in education

12009577_872783149477988_6875135104595165330_nManagers, who hire senior specialists, want to get everything in once. They want seniors to be team leads, as well as complete the most difficult tasks. The fields of expertise of a senior (or even mid developer) seem endless. And it is one more common mistake. Every person wants to improve his/her knowledge and implement skills. And it’s extremely important to support your team in this. As our experience has shown, the more trainings and workshops your programmers visit, the more profit it brings to your project. Even if trainings weren’t useful, they give developer a possibility to become a part of community. So, the main purpose of trainings and workshops is to motivate, to make people inspired with someone’s success stories and proven references from the satisfied clients. And the fact that manager provides its employees with training support within and outside the company proves the company’s serious intents and reliability.

(Team) building

12440464_1017291988360436_1278136893094164557_oThe greatest businesses were built with great and happy people. Having a team that enjoys working together is even more important than writing tons of inefficient code. Good software can be built simply – nowadays it doesn’t take a genius to do this. But it definitely requires recourses – at least few programmers, maybe, QA engineer, and maybe some other specialists. On a dev team, every person counts. So, when maximizing a value of every individual developer, you maximize the value of a team and the value of a project.

Treat your team like you can’t succeed without their help. Because, actually it’s true. Organize team buildings, reward the best employees, and inspire them with positive feedback and friendly atmosphere.

 

At Blackthorn Vision we really appreciate our employees. We’re sure that having a well managed and inspired team is half the work. Want to know more? We’re ready to share our experience. Drop us a line at sales@blackthorn-vision.com

Photos are taken from www.fuseyourbusiness.com, www.careersingovernment.com.