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Just Fix One Thing

You might have heard of James Clear’s Atomic Habits book – you may have even read it.

One thing it breaks down for you (pun intended) is how to make differences that will stick. One habit at a time.

While this is a generic good tip for everyone, faced with a mountain of bugs and feature requests, what’s the right way to go with your software product? Create a new initiative to stomp down on technical debt? Create a new microservice to enable your platform team to grow? Create components – they’re small right? Create a product-centric view?

It’s easy to get persuaded by what you think are attractive strategies but when you boil it all down, it comes to this:

  • You have some software
  • It needs to be improved
  • You have some people to help you

Forget about the strategies, the tools, the backlogs for a second and grab a piece of paper and just write down the simplest one thing you could do today to fix your product. Then fix it, and cross out your item. Do the same tomorrow.

Chances are that our biggest problem is already at the top of your mind.

So forget backlogs, forget planning, forget product for a minute. Just fix one thing. The repeat.