I had a great time with the team last night, pushing the limits to get a huge project finished. Oh sure, those moments can be frustrating when you’re living them. On the other hand, there is nothing that beats finishing a goal on time and know you’ve actually worked your ass off together to make it.

Some thoughts:

  • Know when to push forward: you should have a clear plan on what you want or need to accomplish. We’re talking about pushing beyond office hours. It really helps to have a very clear goal, to rally the team and work towards a shared objective.
  • You’re a huge part of the motivation: even if you cannot do the actual work, you should stick with the team and take care of the vibe. Arrange food, drinks, music: whatever makes the team more comfortable doing their work.
  • Make sure to schedule down-time and celebrate: putting in the extra hours might be needed to get stuff done, you need to make sure the team has time to recover from the shortcuts and overtime. And make sure to properly celebrate what you achieved.
  • Learn from the event: why was it necessary to make this investment in the first place? Planning error? Technical debt? It should not be the default and if it’s your team, you’re in the perfect position to make sure it is not necessary.