When Things Are Broken
At a recent gathering, I entered a hotel conference room and found a quite disturbing site. Keeping in mind that I have had some job in the office / software industry for as long as I could remember, I had never quite witnessed a chair that had been so brutally abused as this chair had been.
My first thought was that my wife may have planted the chair there as a message to me that I needed to stick to my New Years resolution to lose some weight and get in better shape. But then it struck me, this chair must have suffered something much more intense than an overweight guy looking for a comfy seat.
It was quickly evident that this chair had a story to tell. The first thought that came to my mind was I wonder what else happened during this retrospective? What evidence had already been cleaned up? Was there any other evidence left behind? Was this more than just a retrospective gone wrong? Could it be a crime scene? The questions were flowing just as fast as I could conjure the images in my mind. Obviously I am never an advocate of violence inside or outside the workplace, but this chair left me with more questions than answers. At that very moment, I had the thought, if this is what remains of the chair, I wonder what the person may look like now?
Than it hit me like the A-Ha moment Dr. Cockburn promised I would have one day, the root question was how am I treating people and am I the person who is making the team feel mended or broken? Am I the broken chair? Am I a person who is fixing things? Where do I fit in the mix of my team? Am I acting like I feel like I am perceived? Or am I acting like I want others to perceive me?
We really should take a moment and determine how & whether we are the able to make a difference or if we are acting as an idle cog in the wheel of progress. The bigger question is are we broken? Are we broken as a team? An organization? How can we make things right? Although this may be a record for the most questions in a single blog post, I suppose it may help us understand where and who we are in our organization. It is our time to make an impact. The mantra for the day is clearly, "If we find that it is broken, it is our duty to assist in the fix". Enjoy & Stay Agile!