On November 4, 2009 SDForum and SAP presented “Distributed Development”. Professor Terri Griffith of Santa Clara University moderated panelists Richard Bair of IBM, Cherie Gardiner and Suzanne Kirkpatrick of Microsoft, George Mathew and Clas Neumann of SAP, as well as Jeff Pettibone of NetApp. They shared their experiences with high level SAP Labs leaders on managing development projects spread across the planet for large organizations.
First determine if distributing the development is needed. It might be faster and easier to do it in one place. If the project requires it, be prepared to travel. Despite the technology, it is important to spend time on site to learn about the people, places and culture of wherever you are collaborating. Find their strengths and see how it fits with teams in other places. Study how other multinational corporations adjust. Monolithic policies don’t work. Adapt to local conditions to build trusting relationships. Remember you are not doing business “in” a country but “with” the people in it.
By the way, the best time in Silicon Valley to hold a teleconference with Europe and Asia is 7:00 AM PST.
Copyright 2009 DJ Cline All rights reserved.