Track Talk Th14

That Which isn’t Good for the Hive, isn’t Good for the Bee

Sanne Visser

14:15-15:00 CEST Thursday 15th June

Success stings if it comes at the expense of the hive.

As a child at school, I adored getting gold star stickers. As an adult, like a good worker bee I strived for excellent performance reviews and employee of the month recognition. Add to that achieving external recognition, for example the Rising Star award I won back in 2018, and I felt like a queen bee. However, I have come to realise how damaging these competitive and hierarchical structures are. Especially within teams that rely on working well together. So I have decided to recover from my love of gold stickers because it’s actually team work that runs a healthy hive.

Competition doesn’t deliver what you think it does. Rarely does competition enhance collaboration or mutuality, but it does reinforce silos and restricts the flow of information. How about instead we leave no hive behind?

Removing what’s unhealthy for the hive also means addressing some of these bee-liefs.

Someone has to ‘run the hive’ and tell us what to do. Don’t they?

If competition disappears, won’t people stop buzzing around?

When I don’t have clear goals, nectar to collect. How will I tell if I’m successful?

As a recovering gold-sticker-addict, I’ll share how my thinking on these topics has changed and how it’s influencing my job as a tester. We are all bound up in this thing called software development together and these old structures hurt us, it’s time to dismantle them. Let’s build some excellent beehives instead.