Quest: Work in a high performing team

November 29th, 2020

I was still studying software engineering at the university.

While watching some random conference videos, I came across conference talks about software leadership and teamwork.

And suddenly I realised: “software development is a team sport”.


Software was like group assignments at school.

This thought was horrifying!

In all my years in school, I can only remember one group assignment that was joyful.

All the others were horrible experiences.

I'd rather worked alone, even if I had to do 3-5 times the work.

Simon Sinek put's it best in Quote: cynicism, paranoia, mistrust and self-interest

Get those conditions wrong and the opposite will occur:

- cynicism,

- paranoia,

- mistrust and

- self-interest.


I loved programming but I hated group projects.

I hated all group projects with a passion!

All except one, where 4 friends and I worked on a project.

I myself wasn't even part of the group assigned.

I joined in on the work just for fun!

The actual group I was assigned to, I had to also do the work for.

And as always, it was an unpleasant, toxic culture.


But there was a small ray of hope, in that one project with friends.

Maybe, there's a way to make more group projects as fun as that one?

My love for programming pushed me, so I started looking for a solution.

I started studying topics like: leadership, psychology, company culture, motivation.

Reading books and watching conference talks.

And that spark of hope, became a small flame:

Great teamwork, can multiply the efforts of those involved.

Creating something more than the sum of the parts.

More than any one individual could have conceived!

This is what I wanted.


I started attending conferences and meetups to practice my social skills.

As a student, you can get into conferences much cheaper. (sometimes free!)

All you have to do is ask!

And I conquered my fear of

  • talking to strangers

  • going to places I've never been before

  • going to gatherings without knowing what it was about


I did a small pet project with a fellow student, instead of going at it alone.

Switched from university to university college.

There was more programming in group there!

And I started doing summer jobs in software development.


All these experiences

  • horrible school group assignments

  • one school assignment with friends

  • the ray of hope "multiplied team greatness"

Together this forms the foundation for my quest

My quest for a high-performing team

My quest for an awesome team culture


How do I collaborate, so that working together is enjoyable?

How do I collaborate, so that we multiply each other?


Topics of interest:

  • agile methodologies

  • accelerate

  • communication

  • teamwork

  • leadership

  • team culture

  • event storming

  • facilitation

  • vulnerability

  • empathy

  • emotions

  • psychological safety