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Agency — July 9, 2015

J-D Method: The Enemies

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Slaven Vincetić Software Developer

What’s every professional’s worst nightmare? The moment when he realizes that he’s not making any progress in his professional field because he is not fulfilling his potential.

J-D method is the implementation of the J-D philosophy that was created in Degordian’s development department to help boost personal growth and to push the organization to the next level. In order to understand the J-D philosophy, we will have multiple texts that discuss problems, solutions, approach, building and implementation of the J-D method.

In this part we will analyze problems (enemies of the J-D) that the method is trying to solve. We will also briefly discuss the implications of those problems and provide examples to further illustrate the situation.

Enemies of J-D

No planning

Failing to plan is planning to fail. Every decision that impacts any long-term situation must be well planned and analyzed.

The no-planning moment is only good for some creative processes but they too need a great deal of planning. People are impulsive creatures and they can be easily led astray to the dark side (simpler and shorter solutions). While that’s not necessarily a bad thing, we must always decide when something like that is appropriate and when it’s not.

Did you ever have a project without a clear plan about how you should do it or when should you finish it? What happened to it in the end? You could have forgotten to implement lots of important things, maybe you totally missed the project timeframe and there probably wasn’t a single moment in which you could say: “OK, it’s finished”.

While we’re working,  we can’t always see the bigger picture, so we need to slow down and evaluate our decisions. We need to see their implications on our progress and how we can make them work for us in the long run.

Short term planning

Tell me have you ever made a temporary solution that eventually became permanent? And if you did (and I know you did), was it any good? Tell me how much energy and resources did it took to do it all over again, and do it properly?

The answer is obvious – short-term solutions are very dangerous. They could include a bit of planning, but if they aren’t planned for the long run, they will eventually fail and bite you back. We are all aware of that situation, but we are still repeating it over and over again. Why?

Because it’s solving our problem! It’s not solving it how it should, but it lowers the priority on it so we can do something else. And that priority never goes back high enough for us to do it properly.

Bad habits

I will ask you just one more question. Have you ever had a situation where you knew exactly what’s supposed to be done and what’s the best possible solution for that problem, but still you refused to do it? You probably said to yourself something like: “I know it is the right way to do it, but this will be faster, and simpler”. And later, when the project starts collapsing like a house of cards, you ask yourself: “why didn’t I do it the way I knew was right? I had a good solution in my head but I still chose the inferior solution just because I was lazy”. That is a bad habit and is one of the fundamentals that support the problem of short-term solutions.

Lack of knowledge or experience

Lack of knowledge or experience is pretty straightforward. Experienced people have a better sense for predicting possible problems and situations – they immediately create a plan that will provide solutions to all of the possible cases. On the other hand, a person with lots of knowledge is very good at taking most of the available tools and creating a product of a superior quality.

The aim for everyone is to get as much experience and as much knowledge as they can, so they can produce better quality products and master their professions.

We explored the issues that “enemies of J-D” can create to organizations and to individuals. These are the biggest roots of our problems, the points where all problems start before they culminate. Now that we know the roots of our problems we can discuss how to create the environment where that problems won’t occur.

In the next part, we will discuss the traits that the organization or individual should have to avoid these situations.