We have been encountering some issues on my latest projects with multiple parallel projects sharing the same environments. We have had situations where demos were being held in an environment and then other people restarted the environment or changes were deployed to the environment. Clearly, there was a communication and co-ordination issue that we needed to find a quick resolution for.
Borrowing from the talking stick idea of the Northwest Native Canadians, we decided to implement the use of a token to grant rights to an environment. You can find out more about the Talking Stick by following this link.
I have heard mention of using a talking token in stand-ups to energize the meetings. So our idea is to have a football for each environment. Possession of that football is required for all demos, deploys, and changes to all environments. Possession of the football can be reserved ahead of time or granted on an ad-hoc basis. You can’t take the football away from the other person though, it must be given willingly. Essentially you need the football when you want to change an environment or prevent an environment from changing.
I’ll report back on how the football concept goes. It is just another opportunity to make work fun in the middle of a rapidly evolving project.