At work today, me and my colleagues got our first taste of a team project. It was only a mock project created for evaluation purposes. Actually, when we started work, we were under the impression that it was going to be too easy. The requirements were very simple and were similar to what we had practiced already. On top of that, we had a lot of members in the team and so, once the work is split among the members, the work-load on an individual would be meager. It sounds all too good, doesn't it?
Life is never that simple. To be more precise, programming is never free of glitches and teamwork is never easy. Writing a piece of code may sound simple and straightforward once you know the syntax. But it will throw an error when you least expect it. The same piece of code that worked yesterday won't work today. The code that works in one system might not work in another. google is the god we turn to during such crisis but sadly, we were denied that liberty this time. So, whenever we encountered an error which we haven't faced before, we felt like a patient with an incurable disease who doesn't believe in god. You felt doomed!
Next up is teamwork. A mother takes ten months to deliver a child. It doesn't mean that ten mothers can deliver a child in one month. Though working as a team helps a lot, it doesn't mean that every work can be shared or that the logic becomes simpler. In an article that I read recently, the author said that innovation can come only from teams in which the members trust each other completely. To get a simple work done, we may not have to trust each other but we still have to work together. Working together is way more complicated when you have different perceptions, different ideas and even different languages. In a team, it is not enough even if everyone do their work properly; their work should synchronize well with each other's. That is the key.
Fortunately or unfortunately, I got caught in the middle of the chaos as I was given the job of combining everyone's work together. For me though, the whole experience felt like home. I'm familiar with the confusion, the stringent debugging, the slow code-walkthrough etc. In fact, the whole team was quite happy at the end of the ordeal. I on the other hand, loved every second of it, but I wouldn't wanna do it for more than 8 hours..