Scenarios that make you scarce
Software development productivity is the ratio of desirable high-quality software to money spent. With this meaning, productivity is aligned with quality and effectiveness: it only counts creating “the right software” and encompasses creating “the software right”. Productivity is more important than efficiency (the lack of waste), as occasionally a bit of inefficiency pays off.
In the quest for some combination of these values, project management methodologies or practitioners generally assume that members of a team have approximately similar scarcity/availability/cost. But sometimes, you may find yourself more scarce than a group you are working with:
- You are leading at a high “fan-out” – one person leading a team of many.
- You are leading a team expected (for good reasons or bad) to expand or turn over significantly.
- You are much more senior than the rest of your team.
- You are in an expensive city or country, other team members are in a less expensive locale.
- You are a “hired gun” consultant, brought in at great cost, expected to “move the needle”.
- You are a professional developer responsible for mentoring, teaching, and getting results from a group of interns.
- You have a communication advantage with the customers of a product or project; perhaps you speak the customer’s language more fluently than others on your team.
- You are the only team member with extensive and relevant experience to the problem at hand.