When Something Isn’t Working, Have The Courage To Kill It

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I’m a great believer in the idea of recognising when something isn’t working, and having the courage to stop doing it.

It’s something we sometimes struggle with on our web sites, gradually producing a lot of clutter that isn’t working as well as we’d like, and losing emphasis on the important stuff that is.

And it’s also true with processes. How many things are you or your team doing that are only being done because “that’s the way you’ve always done it”? Is everything you’re doing actually adding value? It’s so easy to lose sight of what’s valuable as and when things change over time. Things that used to be critical may now be unnecessary. It needs people to constantly challenge what’s important.

This can be difficult, because many people don’t like change. People become comfortable with how things are done, rightly or wrongly. Maybe there is some hidden value in something you might only discover long after you stop doing it? That’s why I say ‘have courage’. If you, your team, and the people that interact with your team can’t see the value in something, then maybe it’s not actually valuable.

While I’m on this topic, I’m going to practice what I preach…

There are two sections of this site that I introduced in the last year that just haven’t got the response that I hoped for.

One is the Directory, where I hoped people would register their own details and it would become a useful resource, listing all the companies, products, web sites and services in the agile community. But, sadly, not many people did.

The other is the Jobs section. Even though I have a large audience and it’s free to post a job, very few people bothered.

So I’ve taken the decision to kill these sections off. They’ve gone! Maybe you’ll see them again one day. But, for the moment, I think it’s best not to clutter my site with sections that people aren’t finding useful.

What are you going to stop doing?