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Culture eats DevOps for
Breakfast
DevOps Summit
Chris Flink
@chrisflink
What is DevOps about?
The Cloud?
DevOps	Summit	Brussels	 @chrisflink
What is DevOps about?
10 Deploys a day?
DevOps	Summit	Brussels	 @chrisflink
What is DevOps about?
The Tools?
DevOps	Summit	Brussels	 @chrisflink
DevOps is about…
•  Not ( just) the tools, but the people
•  Separate Goals and Means
•  Not ( just) the people, but the c...
The questions are
•  How to make two departments collaborate
•  How do you build a strong culture and influence
behaviour?...
Implementing DevOps is about
Changing Organisational Culture
Nolost Capital helps companies create and
maintain a culture ...
A short story
Tension between office and outside sales force
“Why can’t they pay more attention to the
quality of their no...
The problem is not unique
•  MarSals (Marketing – Sales)?
•  ManLogs (Manufactoring – Logistics)?
•  What can we learn fro...
What’s causing the behaviour
•  Different goals and targets
•  No understanding of the peculiarities of each
others work
•...
Find a shared goal
•  Search for a broader perspective
•  Get together and have a dialog
•  Hint: Look at the company’s mi...
Define a shared strategy
•  How to achieve this goal together
DevOps	Summit	Brussels	 @chrisflink
Make it fun!
DevOps	Summit	Brussels	 @chrisflink	
The	Fun	Theory	-	h;p://www.youtube.be/watch?v=2lXh2n0aPyw
It’s never ready
•  Continuous Feedback and learning
DevOps	Summit	Brussels	 @chrisflink
Second Question

How do you build a strong culture and
influence behaviour?
DevOps	Summit	Brussels	 @chrisflink
Story: Coolblue
•  Fast growing company
•  Doubling in size every 20 months
•  € 500+ million turnover
•  Secret of their ...
Approach
•  Know where you stand and where you are
coming from
•  Know where you want to go 
•  Know what steps to take wh...
Assess current situation
•  Employee research (questionnaires, interviews, ...)
–  What is working well and should be secu...
What do you want to achieve
•  What is the desired behaviour?
– Make it explicit:

“After helping someone, you always ask ...
Take the right step at the right time
•  Laws of Psychology apply
– Maslow Pyramid
– Adam’s Equity model
DevOps	Summit	Bru...
DevOps	Summit	Brussels	 @chrisflink
Start!
•  Make sure everybody feels safe
– To make errors
– To be unknowing
– To speak up
•  Plan time to evaluate, give f...
Applied to DevOps
•  Know your target group (no stereotyping but often…)
– Technical
– Data and metrics driven
– Love thei...
Things to take into account
•  It’s a continuous process
•  Group influence is a very strong driver for
behaviour
DevOps	S...
Things to take into account
DevOps	Summit	Brussels	 @chrisflink	
The	Asch	Experiment	-	h;ps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qA-gb...
Things to take into account
•  Support and train 

people where 

required
•  You are the example
•  Make it fun!
DevOps	S...
Benefits of strong culture
•  Easier to attract and hire talent
•  Lower employee turnover
•  Happy employees
– Are more p...
Questions?
DevOps	Summit	Brussels	 @chrisflink
Thank you!
Contact:
nolostcapital.nl
chrisflink@nolostcapital.nl
@chrisflink
DevOps	Summit	Brussels	 @chrisflink
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Culture eats DevOps for Breakfast

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DevOps is the answer to the growing complexity and speed of (web) application development. Driven by the faster moving markets and Agile development approach the differences of the development and operations divisions grew. While the development teams where asked to deliver more functionality faster, the operations teams had to make sure things were stable, high available, secure and performant. While both teams see the importance of all requirements, when an integrated approach is missing, the requirements are conflicting.

Historically development and operations are seen and managed as two separate divisions, this growing complexity asks for a better co-operation and integrated approach. There are various ways two departments can improve collaboration and since both departments are technically skilled they tend to start with tools that enable them to work together. However, this is only part of the solution, there also has to be a culture that enables them to collaborate.

This presentation elaborates on how to get two different departments working together and build a culture to foster co-operation and innovation.

Published in: Leadership & Management
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Culture eats DevOps for Breakfast

  1. 1. Culture eats DevOps for Breakfast DevOps Summit Chris Flink @chrisflink
  2. 2. What is DevOps about? The Cloud? DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  3. 3. What is DevOps about? 10 Deploys a day? DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  4. 4. What is DevOps about? The Tools? DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  5. 5. DevOps is about… •  Not ( just) the tools, but the people •  Separate Goals and Means •  Not ( just) the people, but the culture •  Make people feel safe and co-operate •  Not ( just) the culture, but the behaviour •  It is what you do, how you react, how you behave DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  6. 6. The questions are •  How to make two departments collaborate •  How do you build a strong culture and influence behaviour? DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  7. 7. Implementing DevOps is about Changing Organisational Culture Nolost Capital helps companies create and maintain a culture that enables them to be successful and achieve business goals. •  Using: Research, Data Analysis, Science •  Providing: Business Intelligence, Coaching, Interventions •  Chris Flink – Co-Founder •  Data / Process / People / IT •  Computer Science, Business and Psychology DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  8. 8. A short story Tension between office and outside sales force “Why can’t they pay more attention to the quality of their notes for the offer?” “Why are they always complaining, can’t they see I’m busy generating business?” DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  9. 9. The problem is not unique •  MarSals (Marketing – Sales)? •  ManLogs (Manufactoring – Logistics)? •  What can we learn from this? DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  10. 10. What’s causing the behaviour •  Different goals and targets •  No understanding of the peculiarities of each others work •  Busy doing ‘their’ work and no time for each other •  No dialog, no constructive feedback, just blaming DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  11. 11. Find a shared goal •  Search for a broader perspective •  Get together and have a dialog •  Hint: Look at the company’s mission •  Make Customers Happy •  Enable the Business •  Grow number of projects / clients / users •  Etc. DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  12. 12. Define a shared strategy •  How to achieve this goal together DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  13. 13. Make it fun! DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink The Fun Theory - h;p://www.youtube.be/watch?v=2lXh2n0aPyw
  14. 14. It’s never ready •  Continuous Feedback and learning DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  15. 15. Second Question How do you build a strong culture and influence behaviour? DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  16. 16. Story: Coolblue •  Fast growing company •  Doubling in size every 20 months •  € 500+ million turnover •  Secret of their success? –  A very strong focus on the customer (external) and organisation culture (internal) Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CahqmZPZfVc (Dutch) DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  17. 17. Approach •  Know where you stand and where you are coming from •  Know where you want to go •  Know what steps to take when DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  18. 18. Assess current situation •  Employee research (questionnaires, interviews, ...) –  What is working well and should be secured –  What is not and should be changed –  Hidden frustrations, incomprehension, resistance •  Management / Stakeholder interviews –  Business objectives –  Restrictions –  Willingness to change DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  19. 19. What do you want to achieve •  What is the desired behaviour? – Make it explicit: “After helping someone, you always ask if everything is clear and if there is anything else he / she needs help with” “When someone makes an error we don’t judge but ask how we can help to recover first, and ask how we can prevent it in the future after” DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  20. 20. Take the right step at the right time •  Laws of Psychology apply – Maslow Pyramid – Adam’s Equity model DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  21. 21. DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  22. 22. Start! •  Make sure everybody feels safe – To make errors – To be unknowing – To speak up •  Plan time to evaluate, give feedback, and discuss improvements – Sometimes standing still is the best way to make progress DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  23. 23. Applied to DevOps •  Know your target group (no stereotyping but often…) – Technical – Data and metrics driven – Love their tools – Communication (feedback) skills – Combine with values of Open Source Culture DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  24. 24. Things to take into account •  It’s a continuous process •  Group influence is a very strong driver for behaviour DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  25. 25. Things to take into account DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink The Asch Experiment - h;ps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qA-gbpt7Ts8
  26. 26. Things to take into account •  Support and train 
 people where 
 required •  You are the example •  Make it fun! DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  27. 27. Benefits of strong culture •  Easier to attract and hire talent •  Lower employee turnover •  Happy employees – Are more productive – Make less errors – Have lower absenteeism rate – Are more resilient DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  28. 28. Questions? DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink
  29. 29. Thank you! Contact: nolostcapital.nl chrisflink@nolostcapital.nl @chrisflink DevOps Summit Brussels @chrisflink

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