End of sprint ceremonies today. Could have gone better.

We failed the sprint quite hard. Not entirely our fault: we actually got a lot done, but we couldn’t deploy them until we got the go ahead from management. This meant we couldn’t mark the tasks as complete and get the points for the work. This bought the mood down somewhat. The retro was also a bit… sombre? Maybe sombre’s not the right word but there was a general feeling of things not going as well as they should.

Mixed this in with some concerns about a feature we are responsible for that was buggy and was blocking a release of another teams that had to go out today. It’s never a good feeling when you had to roll something back. Much less so if that thing is something that no one really has a good grasp on. Lot of trying to work out whether it was even safe to rollback.

This feature has been a huge pain for us for the past several weeks. It’s one of these things that is so fiddly, never quite finished, always getting kicked back to the devs because the QA team has found something else that’s not working quite right. I don’t fully blame the team for this either: it was handed to us from another team with the belief that it would be relatively straightforward to finish, which proved not to be the case. Also not fully appreciated is the amount of time it takes to become familiar with a piece of code that you have had no real hand in developing yourself.

I think me being a little hands off on with this feature was a slight mistake. There were other things that I was focused on — and I’ll be honest: it’s hard for me to keep my focus on something that I felt was less important than the thing I was working on. I thought that letting those in the team most capable with doing the work, and just letting them get onto it, was the best approach. I try to take this approach with most things: I know for myself that I can’t stand having someone breath down my neck while I’m working on something. I don’t know: maybe I should have had more of a finger on the pulse. Just a light one, so that if others need to know what’s going on, I could answer them.

Yeah, I’m loving squad leadership. 🙁

At least the demo went well.