How to make your team see the big picture

According to Cambridge Dictionary “the big/bigger picture” means “the most important facts about a situation and the effects of that situation on other things” .In software industry where there are multiple teams involved in getting the desired product out into the real world for use – the BA’s , Developers, Testers, UAT, Project Managers, Support Team and End Users , it is quiet difficult to make sure they understand the “The BIG Picture”.

When you are managing a good size team it is always tough to march your army towards the goal.So far in my career I had managed small to mid size teams and found that it is quiet difficult and often unpredictable to see the impact of the work done by a team on others.For instance a Developer with good technical knowledge may not be a good tester and will always think on problem solving rather than anticipating the possible areas where their code can fail.I am not saying that all Developers will be so ,but majority of them primarily focus on coding. Reasons can be multiple – the attitude developed within them that as there is a separate group to do QA i.e TESTING Team why should I worry much or may be Stringent timelines doesn’t allow them to do proper QA or may be limited knowledge about the requirement/domain could be the reason. Now it becomes the duty of the testing team(perhaps they are there to make sure nothing breaks 🙂 ) to make sure there are no leaks to the requirement.The Tester too has their own set of issues. They may not be sound in technical skills or the architecture or stringent time lines may not allow them to think on all possible ways of code break.A defect as per tester may not be actually a defect from Developer perspective and this often leads to a lot of confusion , clashes between Developers and Testers or pooling of defects unresolved.

This is a common problem and often leads to change in project deadlines/timelines.This results in loss of reputation of the team in front of client and a hole in the pocket of the client as well as us. So how to mitigate such issues and make the team see the big picture.

1). Attitude : Groom the team to become more Agile , schedule discussions between the various teams to Understand each other and Collaborate more about the requirement. Ice breaker sessions are much needed in case of any conflict .

2).Planning : As a Manager proper planning is required to make sure the resources have enough time to think , analyse and execute . This might look obvious because we are there for that very reason. But if we don’t do it right the team is suppose to fail, so sit back find a time in office where you can be creative and analytical and then do the planning. You are the best person in deciding this time :-).

3). Seeing wide, from others shoes and in time : Humans are basically divided into two types Leaders and Followers. 99% of them are followers and so is your team. Always see from multiple directions , possible road block and make the team aware of them much ahead so that they can plan their activities accordingly. Also think how one reacts to a situation , it is known fact that not everyone thinks alike. and more important act in time and swiftly.

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