Collaboration Patterns

Collaboration Patterns

When 2 teams are operating on the same project we can have different types of collaboration types:

  • Partnership: collaborating towards a common goal.
  • Customer-Supplier: dependency is less symmetrical
  • Conformist: no negotiations. The downstream party just gets what they're given.
  • Open Host: have a clear set of rules, language and boundaries that makes collaboration possible.
  • Separate Ways: no collaboration.
  • Big Ball of Mud: chaos
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Work Improvements


Team Topologies

Team Topologies focuses on team structure & purpose:

  • How do large teams split the workforce?
  • How do teams interact with one-another?

Colaboration between teams is one of the key fundamental traits of successful companies, but there has not been a framework to explain the succesful approaches at companies like Spotify or Toyota. 

4 team types & 3 interaction models

There are only 4 team types: 

  1. Stream Aligned Team focused on a specific cross-functional business capability
  2. Platform Team providing common services to others
  3. Complicated Subsystem Team has high specialization & specific knowledge about one portion of the system
  4. Enabling Team: expert who are helping others to evolve & improve

In terms of relationship between teams we can have:

  • Collaboration when teams are working towards a common goal;
  • X - as a service when there is contact in terms of usage, but little collaboration;
  • Facilitation when a team is helping another one to get rid of impediments.

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Platform level problems

TLDR; Scaling teams are hard. A platform team done right can help ease the hardships.

At Conde Nast International we grew from a team of 20 engineers to less than 100 in less than a year. We found out that building out a system that will be used in many markets has a lot of moving parts and repetition. For example rebuilding the infrastructure and application configuration. Adding third party add-on software. Building the application using CDN redirects. DNS registration and configuration.

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A hackathon is an intensive, often software-centric, ideation, prototyping and presentation challenge on known or unknown problems or opportunities.

It is a design sprint-like event in which computer programmers and others involved in software development, including graphic designers, interface designers, project managers, and others, often including subject-matter-experts, collaborate intensively on software projects”

How to setup and run a successful hackathon

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