Recently BTI360 went go karting and it made me think about the similarities between race car driving and software development.
The most talked about person in a NASCAR racing team is the driver. We all know the names:
- Dale Earnhardt
- Earnhardt Jr.
- Jeff Gordon
- Tony Stewart
But do you know who won that last 5 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and was named NASCAR Driver of the Year 4 times? Jimmie Johnson!!!
Outside of the NASCAR scene, the average American wouldn’t recognize Jimmie Johnson. And what did Johnson say immediately after winning his fifth straight NASCAR Sprint Cup?“I think this year we showed what this team is made of,” Johnson said. “At times this season we didn’t have the most speed, but we had the most heart.”
Johnson didn’t make it about himself. It was about the team. Johnson depends on his team for fast pit stops, performance tuning, real time race updates, and much more!
The software teams that are truly great rarely receive accolades and recognition from management. Why? Because the engineers that are constantly putting out fires (typically ones they sparked) hog the spotlight.
But the teams that “get it” are the ones that truly make an impact for their customer’s mission. Deployments go smoother, testing is more thorough, new features come faster, and their clients are happier.
They aren’t in it for the “kudos,” they’re in it because they love what they do and want to perform at the highest level.
Let’s stop looking for the Jeff Gordons of the software world and start looking for the teams that are delivering!