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Assholes are ruining your project (Monki Gras)

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  • Intro Gentoo Social in tech You need to differentiate between personal attacks and technical criticisms.
  • Community is critical Best predictor of long-term viability How do you attract new contributors and users? Your brand. Function of your ability to create results. Key point: Ability to accomplish your mission
  • Good to Great Continual improvement – greatness is a process Metrics Are a few assholes balanced by a few amazing people? – come back to this later
  • Intent to harm not required Difference between how a person treats the powerless and the powerful is a great judge of character
  • Pattern! States vs traits. Consistency across places and times Everyone has a bad day sometimes. For assholes, every day is a bad day. Tolerance builds up over time. You don't realize who's an asshole.
  • Are a few assholes balanced by a few amazing people? Negative interactions 5x worse than positive
  • Are a few assholes balanced by a few amazing people? Negative interactions 5x worse than positive
  • Are a few assholes balanced by a few amazing people? Negative interactions 5x worse than positive
  • Are a few assholes balanced by a few amazing people? Negative interactions 5x worse than positive
  • Are a few assholes balanced by a few amazing people? Negative interactions 5x worse than positive 5 good for 1 bad. Your team needs 5/6 positive people just to break even!
  • External cooperation & recruitment: based on reputation, caused by word of mouth Recruitment is different in FLOSS from biz; everyone has the power
  • Refusal to confront reality Dreadful stats - 50% of targets considered quitting, 12% of targets quit. One asshole, multiple targets. Reputation: word of mouth. Cascade
  • Social and technical ability are orthogonal. One never balances out the other. A good coder has one; a good developer has both.
  • Personal interactions Modeling Reporting: encourage; have a place; respond; rapid feedback Is it your job to change them?
  • Personal interactions—have a conference Modeling
  • People need somewhere to complain and a sense that action will happen— rapid feedback Reporting: encourage; have a place; respond; rapid feedback
  • Are you here to fix people or accomplish your goals? At some point, it's time to cut off the detour. Is it your job to change them?
  • Culture is like molasses, not like code. Problem of change in diffuse organizations: persuasion, shared interests, reputation
  • Show that social aspects have metrics, too. Developers believe numbers.
  • Is “good” really good enough? You are a SWAT team, you need great! Recruitment standards – is “good” good enough?
  • Nobody knows your culture when they start. Do you want them to learn it from an asshole? Provide a code of conduct. Clear expectations set a baseline: code of conduct
  • Get rid of them, and later you'll wonder why it took you so long to act.

Transcript

  • 1. Assholes are Ruining your Project
  • 2. Assholes are Stealing your Beer
  • 3. Reputation Results Contributors The Community Circle
  • 4. Your ability to get results depends on your community .
  • 5. What makes a great community? Assholes The best Most of us
  • 6. Is this even a problem? Ohloh Ubuntu launches Proto-assholes start receiving complaints Assholes removed
  • 7. What isn't an asshole? Conflict is good
  • 8. What is an asshole? A simple test After talking to the asshole, does the target feel oppressed, humiliated, de-energized, or belittled?
  • 9. What is an asshole? Look for patterns
  • 10. How many good interactions does it take to cancel out one bad one? Sutton
  • 11. Sutton
  • 12. Sutton
  • 13. Sutton
  • 14. Sutton
  • 15. Problems assholes cause to targets
    • 48% decreased their effort
    • 16. 47% worked less time
    • 17. 38% dropped their quality
    • 18. 66% declined in performance
    • 19. 80% lost time worrying
    • 20. 63% lost time avoiding
    • 21. 78% became less committed
    • 22. 25% quit; 20% of witnesses quit!
    Sutton
  • 23. Problems assholes cause to projects
    • Reduced innovation & creativity
    • 24. Reduced cooperation & cohesion
    • 25. Cost of targets' retribution toward project
    • 26. Impaired cooperation from external projects & people
    • 27. Impaired ability to attract the best & brightest
    • 28. Recruiting more assholes
    Sutton
  • 29. TCA: Total Cost of Asshole Team lead Developer relations team Project leadership Recruiting & training new developers Targets & witnesses __________________ Total Cost of Asshole + + + + Sutton
  • 30. An asshole is incompetent Flickr: escapo
  • 31. How do you fix it? Flickr: trp0
  • 32. Flickr: kalandrakas
  • 33. Flickr: hashir
  • 34. Flickr: shannonmary
  • 35. How do you prevent it? Flickr: redefyne
  • 36. Flickr: koenvereeken Be quantitative
  • 37. Flickr: soldiersmediacenter Keep your standards high
  • 38. Flickr: mount_otz Provide expectations
  • 39. In the long run, dealing with assholes is never worth it.
  • 40. Donnie Berkholz Analyst RedMonk [email_address] Twitter/IRC: dberkholz