Team are made up of people which means that any team of people consists of a large number of relationships between the individuals.
For the team to be healthy, everyone on the team should communicate effectively with everyone else on the team. Sometimes this does not happen. When team members do not have effective relationships, there is the risk that they may not communicate effectively on something important. As a result the project may be at risk.
If a developer does not tell a tester that they have something to test, the tester may be delayed in starting to test. These delays accumulate.
Relationship watching is harder than people watching because you are looking for the negative space. You are looking for those people who are not communicating effectively. The opposite of a good relationship is not a bad relationship but rather no relationship.
Things I look out for…
- People who used to be close who no longer talk.
- An absence of humour.
- People being unpleasant to each other.
- Snarkiness and snide comments
- Groups going to lunch together who do not take along certain individuals.
I’d love to hear how others look for broken or absent relationships.