Conway’s law

I was going over the slides of the September LeSS conference and I was struck by the deck of Kevlin Henney. He was referring to an organizational structure that I never heard of. I have seen it before, I did not know it had a name and I was not aware that all existing classical org structures are actually wrong.

You are familiar with the classical tree:

But actually, the tree does not represent reality. Real structures look like this:

 

It’s called The Semilattice. I know it in this form:

Conway’s law

Organizations which design systems ... are constrained to produce 
designs which are copies of the communication structures of these 
organizations

Conway’s law says that our software becomes a mess. Check for yourself: do you have high technical debt? Is your system complex? Maybe you choose to ignore Conway’s law and add an architect to your organizational mess. Cross connections and politics resulting from them are unavoidable. To get better software, I  suggest to create the smallest semilattice possible: autonomous teams capable of producing customer value.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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