tempted to post the burn the meeting calendar time slot image into the work chat
because holy fuck

@julialuna can relate despite not being a developer. And this is for a meeting that doesn’t require my input.

@julialuna Although I can relate to this, in the meantime I think developers are behaving as divas, as thou all of them are geniuses producing the super important code that runs the earth itself. Come back to earth please. p.s. I spent over 10yrs developing user functions in safety related field and testing them, I know you need to be concentrated and not distracted. Having one-two meetings a day is not disaster, you loose more time on the toilet and social networks (which is same).

@anonimno @julialuna exactly, this is the same for everybody else. Developers are not “special”

@alan Agree. There's a cost to task-switching. And there's time needed to prepare for a meeting as well as getting things sorted and back to where you used to be before, after. This should be common sense but gets ignored just all too often.

@anonimno @julialuna

@anonimno @julialuna No, it's different. It takes time to get into the state of flow required to produce high-quality software, and the flow state is too easy to break. What's special is not the profession of software engineering -- I'm sure that architects or orchestral composers could experience something similar. No, what's special is the flow state, which most managers don't seem to understand.

@julialuna @markusl State of flow? Ok, I give up. Developers are like Jedi.

@anonimno @julialuna Not really. 😄 Flow is an accepted idea in positive psychology:


Any absorbing mental activity that challenges you, but remains just within your capability, can produce the flow state. While you're there, you're much more productive, and you can achieve breakthroughs that aren't achievable in any other way. But it takes time to get there, and the slightest interruption breaks it.

@anonimno @julialuna Not all devs achieve flow. I've had a public argument with a dev who clearly didn't know what flow is, and denied that it exists. But the strongest devs I know wouldn't say a thing like that.

I suspect that ability to achieve flow is positively correlated with ability to thrive when working from home. It's certainly correlated to motivation, in both directions (because achieving flow is hard work, but it's a real buzz).

@markusl @julialuna I know this, or similar, state. That sweet spot where everything that never fitted before just starts falling into place. My problems is that I see way too much devs not delivering on agreed work and than flipping bottom side up a day before the deadline and starting blaming interruptions, meetings, unclear requirements, god and the world for them not delivering. I am all for transparency and giving devs room to work …

@markusl @julialuna … but I would also like to see some take over of responsibility. I think that the boom in the software industry made a lot of mediocre devs think that they are something special and need special terms (like as opposed to other engineers in e.g. electronics), just because they can write some code and make it compile.

@anonimno @julialuna You're right, there are some pretty grotty devs out there. I've worked with my fair share of them. But the fact that bad developers blame interruptions and meetings doesn't mean that those things have no effect.

@markusl @julialuna Of course they do, I am just saying that we all have them and have to deal with them, in order to deliver the results on the deadline. So let‘s stop thinking only the time and work of the devs is sacred.

@anonimno @julialuna I certainly don't think that. If we as a profession give that impression, it's because we as a profession tend to have dreadful personal skills. Let's own that.

But I do maintain that software developers have to concentrate in the kind of way that scientists and mathematicians do, and that other people in companies where I've worked generally don't. And that's why frequent meetings and interruptions hurt us more than they hurt other people.

@julialuna @markusl Ok, I‘ll keep that in mind when working with my devs (I am a manager and have 2 Scrum teams) in the future. Let’s see if it helps :ablobcatbongo:

@julialuna so glad at my current job management knows to stack meetings in direct succession and leave the rest of the day undistracted

I personally find that time frame a bit exaggerated (YMMV) but yeah, totally agree with OP here.

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