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The IT Pro Podcast: Why devs are collaboration experts

When it comes to cooperation, businesses could learn a few things from their IT team

The IT Pro Podcast - Why devs are collaboration experts

Collaboration is a fundamental part of success in modern business, but while most (although not all) businesses are well-versed in the ways of collaborating within their teams, not all companies are as confident when it comes to sharing knowledge and ideas with their peers in other organisations.

One group that has absolutely nailed this, however, is developers and IT professionals. These workers have a long history of collective problem-solving and cooperation, enabled by tools like StackOverflow. In this week’s episode, we’re joined by StackOverflow CEO Prashanth Chandrasekar to find out what exactly makes devs so open to working together - and what other areas of the business can learn from their example to improve their own collaboration practices.

Highlights

“Writing code can actually be a very, very frustrating experience… And so I think those of us that have written software recognise that, empathise with that pain, and wouldn't want to wish that on anybody else. So naturally, there is this affinity to say, Listen, let me help out my fellow developer, because it's actually a much simpler answer than you think.”

“That's why we measure something called knowledge reuse within our product - and the benefit there is for a salesperson to ask a question on StackOverflow for Teams… and not to tap the shoulder of a engineer or a product person who is in the flow state… So the power of the product actually comes when people use it beyond the core groups, because the reason to actually have all this information is to get it to be reused.”

“If you think about why StackOverflow grew in 13 years from zero users and zero questions and answers to 100 million users and 50 million questions and answers… the reason for that is to really break down silos and get the mechanism of really recognising users: the upvotes, the downvotes, the badges, all those elements; being recognised as the world's best software developer for JavaScript, or for Google Cloud or whatever it may be. They're all incentive systems baked in there.”

Read the full transcript here.

Footnotes

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