Taking the pulse of your community sporadically is helpful. Sometimes, it’s more helpful to detach and take the pulse of another community.
I'm a fan of Anthony Bourdain – he's never short of opinions and insights.
Here are 2 conversations from his No Reservations show I thought applicable to understanding both developers and our landscape.
Chef Brian Polcyn: “Practicing Charcuterie is like a lawyer practices law or a doctor practices medicine. You don’t stop, you don’t stop learning! That’s what’s so exciting about it. There are so many variable conditions that could cause success and failure. There is NO formula – what I’d have to teach you is the mentality about the respect of the ingredients and the food and have you understand that principle and that’s what I have you do here in the classroom.”
“You know that old German saying right, that there’s 2 things that you absolutely need but you don’t necessarily have to know –
- How they’re done
- Legislation of sausage making right?”
Bourdain: “Right – well they also say, everyone likes policy making and everybody likes sausage but few people like to see how either of them is made…”
The analogy to developing software and its relationship to our audience is sometimes sausage making… Often, people simply don't want to know and just want to get a finished product. There's a lot more room in that picture for education as a pathway to success.
This second observation I believe is true for our marktplace – just substitute developer for chef and see what you think.
Bourdain: “What this show is really about is customers are a hell of a lot smarter and sophisticated than we give them credit for. It’s a new world that we live in now – and I think it’s important to recognize that it’s happening – whatever it is that’s happening – maybe for the first time in history – in this country – chefs are actually being appreciated for their best efforts rather than punished for them and that’s been a wonderful shift.”