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No naughty or nice with nuts

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One of my favorite snacks is a bowl of mixed nuts.

It reminds me of software teams.

The bowl is a container, holding them all together. All the nuts are in the bowl for the same purpose – my evening snack. My bowl only has nuts, nothing else. In this, the contents are similar.

But the nuts in the bowl aren’t all the same; in fact, they have differences. Some differences make a difference, and some do not.

The size of each nut doesn’t matter to me, but I do prefer to have many different types of nuts in the bowl.

My preferences also create differences; cashews are my favorite, but brazil nuts get left behind.

Now sometimes I eat one nut at a time. But I enjoy it more when I eat them together.

Eaten together produces new flavors that are different from eating them individually. I love cashews and walnuts together, but hazelnuts and walnuts create a weird taste for me.

The exchanges of flavor create new combinations, some of which I like, some of which I dislike.

You may feel differently. You might enjoy Brazil nuts, or maybe you dislike the flavor of cashews and walnuts.

That is okay – there is no naughty or nice with nuts — just different tastes.


What similarities do you see between your team and a bowl of mixed nuts?

What containers, differences, and exchanges do you see?

What new thing could I add to my bowl to something wonderful?

Write back your ideas, and I’ll send a compilation to the list. 🙂


About Marcus Blankenship

Where other technical coaches focus on process or tools, I focus on the human aspects of your Programmer to Manager transition. I help you hire the right people, create the right culture, and setup the right process which achieves your goals. Managing your team isn't something you learned in college. In fact, my clients often tell me "I never prepared for this role, I always focused on doing the work". If you're ready to improve your leadership, process and team, find out how I can help you.

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