Do it. Try it. Fix it.

Do it. Try it. Fix it.” – Sam Walton

That quote is interesting, and while I don’t think Sam Walton was thinking about software, this is the loop that I, and many others, follow. We see a problem, and we try some things. If they work, we move on, if not, we fix things.  At least, that’s the approach most of us would like to take when we see an issue. Sometimes management gets in the way of us following a simple process.

The key part of that quote is the first part, the part Sam Walton talked about was acting in some way. Doing something, making a positive move towards improving something. Many of us want to take action, especially when we see a problem. Again, however, management can get in the way if the problem isn’t prioritized.

There’s one part in DevOps and software development that comes after the “fix it.”. We need to ensure we don’t repeat that type of mistake. This means that when we find a solution, especially a better pattern of building something, we share it. We use the feedback loops and learning ideas in DevOps to ensure others in our organization don’t need to do their own “Do it. Try it, Fix it” loop and repeat our work.

One of the hardest things to convince smart (or very busy) developers to do is change their work habits and patterns to implement something new. While it can slow things down, or create other work, in the long, or even medium term, we can all be more productive if we take the time to share what we’ve learned. We also need to take the time to learn what others share.

Of course, proving your way is better can be a challenge. You need to be sure of yourself, gather evidence, and learn to present a convincing reason why someone else should change. If you can do that, you will have more success.

Steve Jones

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