How do you develop the right values to establish the right culture for your software development team? This guide will provide you with the information to create an effective software development team by helping you understand why values are important and how to develop team values that align with your goals.
It is essential for software development teams to adhere to certain values to create a strong, cohesive unit that can work together effectively. Developing a shared set of values is an excellent way to ensure that everyone on the team (product owner, software developer, Scrum Master, and other stakeholders) are on the same page and know what is expected of them. Our guide on creating software development team values can help you create a stronger sense of identity and purpose.
How to define Team Core Values
There is no single right or wrong answer when defining your team’s core values. However, you can follow some helpful tips and guidelines to ensure that you create a set of software development team values that will be truly meaningful and impactful for your dev team.
Here are a few things to keep in mind as you brainstorm and develop your team’s core values:
- Keep it Simple. When it comes to core values, less is more. Of course, you want to be able to remember and recite your values easily, so try to cram only a little into them. A few concise, well-chosen values will be much more effective than a long list of vague or abstract concepts.
- Make them Relevant. Your values should be reflective of the culture and identity of your company. They should be something your team can rally behind and use as a guide in their everyday work.
- Be Specific. Don’t just settle for general statements like “we value teamwork” or “we are customer-focused.” Drill down and get specific about what that means for your team instead. For example, you could say, “we work collaboratively to achieve common goals” or “we always put the needs of our customers first.”
- Keep them Positive. Your core values should be aspirational and inspirational. They should be something your team can strive to live up to rather than a list of things to avoid. For example, instead of saying, “we don’t tolerate poor communication,” you could say, “we always communicate openly and honestly.”
- Make them actionable. Your values should be more than just pretty words on a piece of paper. They should be something that your team can use to guide their behavior. Make sure that each of your values is specific and actionable so that people know what it means and how they can put it into practice.
- Get input from your team. Try to develop your team’s values in a balanced manner. Instead, solicit input from your team and get their feedback on what they think is essential. It will help ensure that your values are truly relevant and reflective of the needs of your team.
- Be prepared to evolve. Your team’s values should be something that you revisit regularly. You may also need to change them as your team changes and grows. Maintain relevance and impact by evolving your values over time.
13 CORE VALUES OF AGILE SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT TEAM
This set of values prioritizes putting people before processes, getting software out the door fast, and collaborating with customers. They encourage adjusting plans as needed to work better for everyone involved. As a mission statement like scrum values that are “people component” of the scrum framework, it can be helpful to follow guiding principles to ensure everyone is on the same page.
Some important values that software development teams should consider are:
#1. Well Organized
An agile software development team has a well-organized process that they all follow to complete tasks efficiently. This will help avoid confusion and chaos and make tracking progress and identifying improvement areas easier. The best way to remain organized is to create guidelines.
By following some guidelines throughout each stage, the team should be able to keep track of progress: set milestones, so anything accomplished gets credited as well. A clear roadmap should outline the steps needed to achieve the desired outcome.
To be a successful team, the members should have flexibility and adaptability. They will need this as project requirements shift, so they can easily adjust their plans accordingly without much hassle. Team members should be able to pivot and change course when necessary to achieve the best results.
Working together can help software development teams move mountains. It is challenging to get anything done when all members are constantly stepping on each other’s toes or unsure of their role in the project. A clear understanding of everyone’s strengths and weaknesses will help utilize each individual in the most productive way possible so the project can move along swimmingly as every member collaborates.
#4. Two-way Communication
This is one of the most important software development team values, as it holds the team together. If there is a lack of communication, things can easily go awry, leading to disastrous results. Having an open and honest dialogue among team members will help avoid any misunderstandings that could happen later on down the line. It’s essential to have a straightforward method of communication so everyone is on the same page from start to finish.
Along with communication, treating the members with respect is also essential. That includes showing appreciation for the unique skills and abilities that each team member brings to the table. Respect deadlines, and fulfill other commitments you’ve been given – no one enjoys working with someone who constantly delays things or fails to meet their commitments.
#5. Passionate and dedicated
Software development teams need to be passionate about their work to succeed. That means being excited about the project, putting in the extra effort to ensure it’s the best it can be, and always looking for ways to improve. Dedication is also essential – software development is a complex process and requires a lot of time and effort. Therefore, team members who are dedicated to their work and committed to seeing the project through to the end will be vital to its success.
#6. Quality Focused – Attention to Detail
It’s important for software dev teams to pay attention to detail to create high-quality software. It means thoroughly testing the software, fixing all bugs, and ensuring that the user experience is top-notch. Attention to detail will help ensure that the software is of the highest quality and that users are happy with the final product.
Software development teams place a high value on quality, always striving to create the best product possible, and are willing to go the extra mile. A positive user experience is equally vital to the team, as quality is essential.
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Creating user-friendly and enjoyable software should be a top priority for any software development team. That means putting the user’s needs first and foremost and designing software that is easy to use and meets their expectations, which can be checked through UAT sessions.
The team should also focus on achieving the project’s best results. The desire to produce a high-quality product that meets the user’s needs should drive them. Moreover, it should deliver value for the user rather than focusing on features that are not essential.
#8. Lifelong Learning – experimentation culture
To remain competitive in today’s job market, software development team members must constantly thirst for knowledge and a commitment to lifelong learning and growth. They must continue striving towards improvement and be able to learn new skills on the fly if necessary because nothing can predict what projects may come up next.
The team should have a culture of experimentation. They should be willing to try new things and take risks to achieve the best results. They should also be open to feedback to learn from their mistakes.
The team should be honest and transparent with each other. And should keep their commitments, regardless of the amount of work involved or what it may entail. They should also show respect for the time of others.
#10. Psychological safety: The Key To Creativity And Innovation
Innovative and creative work can only come from a place where people feel safe enough to experiment and try new things without fear of judgment. For software development teams to make strides in innovation, they must foster an environment with psychological safety. Doing this allows them to be more imaginative while simultaneously removing potential threats around their creativity.
For a team to be successful, each member must be free to operate as they see fit. Meaning they choose their tools, methods, and processes. It also means having the ability to make decisions without needing approval from others. Team members can choose methodologies, technology, and tools (with few limitations). This type of autonomy allows team members to be more productive and to take ownership of their work.
#12. Agile mindset
The team needs to have an agile mindset- adapting quickly and working in a fast-paced environment. It also means agile teams are flexible (to pivot) when necessary to deliver software efficiently so that users get the most value.
#13. Continuous improvement
Good software development teams always strive for continuous improvement. They are constantly seeking ways to improve the process and learn from any mistakes they may make along the way in an ever-changing world of technology.
Consider these core values when developing guidelines for your development team. Organizations make better decisions when they use informative frameworks. That is true for individual employees and groups collaborating, so you must take the time to create one.
What core values are you putting into practice?
Your software development team’s core values shape your organization’s culture and influence how your team works together, and this drives each member to finish items on the product backlog. The often complicated process of determining how to implement values can be difficult, but it’s essential.
It is only possible for a single approach or framework to work for some; each squad should use its guidelines and start points before making adjustments based on what works best to succeed with those ideas.
Core Values Frequently Asked Questions
Does each Scrum team need to have its own set of values?
Every software development team doesn’t need to have its values. However, it may be helpful in most cases because each software development team has its own culture.
Why are software development values important?
Software development values are important because they help to create a strong, cohesive team that can work together effectively. They can also help to provide direction and purpose, as well as a sense of identity and belonging.
What if my team doesn’t have any values?
If your team doesn’t have any values, it may be time to start developing some. You can use the values listed above as a starting point. Alternatively, you can ask your team members to brainstorm a list of values that are important to them. Once you have a list of values, you can start developing guidelines for how to live by them.
How can I create a set of software development values for my team?
Some ways you can create a set of software development values for your team include: holding regular team meetings to discuss and agree on values, conducting a values exercise with your team, or creating a values statement that everyone on the team can sign.
How do software development teams use values?
Software development teams use values in a variety of ways. Values can help to provide direction, purpose, and understanding of the team’s goals. As software development team members share similar values, they can create a sense of identity and belonging. Additionally, values are important because they give the team clarity on their roles and responsibilities, as well as provide guidance for decision-making.
What are some common software development team values?
There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as each software development team is unique. However, some commonly seen values include trustworthiness, respect, psychological safety, autonomy, and continuous improvement.
How can I get my team to buy into these values?
You can get your team to buy into these values in many ways. A good place to start is discussing the importance of values and why they are important to the team’s success. Additionally, sharing stories or examples of times when values have helped the team succeed. Finally, you can ask each team member to commit to living by these values.
These are a few software development team values that you should consider. Remember, you should be prepared to evolve your values over time and solicit feedback from your team. This way, you will help ensure that they are relevant and impactful. In addition, clearly defining and communicating your team’s values can help create a cohesive unit focused on achieving common goals.