In Feature teams, Teamwork

A team I am working with is in the storming stage of their development.


It’s been sometime that they have been forming, carefully learning each other, sometimes from afar. Each person was doing their own stuff, limiting their interaction to consultations. Every person to their own.

However pressure from the outside made team members understand that this is not good enough, they need to increase their performance. Being on a team means doing things together, which is much more than helping when asked.

However this is not an easy thing to do. It means they need to get closer and remove some barriers. And this creates conflict.

The attempts to work closer together brings with it the storm. When we lower our shields, to be able to better interact, we become vulnerable.

People start to argue, argue because they care. Some arguments become nasty. temporary coalitions are forming. People discover the good and bad of other people. The atmosphere heat up.

When organic matter transforms to compost it heats up. There’s a lot of activity. a lot of energy is released in this process. The  storming stage of a team releases a lot of heat also. You need energy to transform. But it is worth it. A team that went through this process functions on a different level altogether.

Alas, an issue with this process, as my friend Michal points out, is that, like compost, sometimes it stinks.

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