I am back from a tornado business trip to USA – Boston, Charlotte, Atlanta, Chicago and New York in just 7 days. Breathtaking customer workshops, intense technical debate and smoldering experiences shared throughout the venture. There is a common, radical urgency to change, which is driving across organizations right now. And more often than not, DevOps is at the center of these digital changes, realizing the promised “La-La Land” – “zero defect”, “full-fledged automation” and “one-touch deployment” Land of the Land – where every software lived happily after release!
As I was traveling back, TV ran a dance institute, which featured Cha-Cha. You know, the Cuban dance form goes “two, three, cha-cha-cha”. Three steps forward, two steps back, cha-cha-cha. As I watched the elegant dancers come to life, I realized – there is also a “Devo cha-cha-cha”. No enterprise can go straight through just one change, it is always three steps forward, two steps back, cha-cha-cha. that’s how it’s done. Some successes, some failures, yet you move forward. It is the same algorithm to achieve anything in life.
Why is a DevOps Change Hard?
Beyond the unicorn’s famous saying, “this thing doesn’t work”, “we’re too big / small to change” and the plan is many stories of failed stories of the old “thank you, but we’re doing fine”.DevOps radically changes the way an enterprise works. And change is difficult. First of all, all of these shiny new tools are process changes and agile ways of coding, building, testing, and releasing software.
All of this, if corrected, leads to a high degree of transparency in real time. And this is not always desirable for all teams. Information that previously rested in the world of myriad Excel sheets is now available on dashboards for everyone to see. It is not always relaxing.Then, there are the soft challenges. Things that include structural changes, role changes, power struggles, contract renegotiation and sometimes resource depletion. These bring in complex human angles, which have many layered dimensions.
DevOps is no longer optional
It is increasingly accepted that the case for a DevOps change is no longer “good-pass”; It is a “must have”. And this business case is being driven by a dynamic business environment and a fierce competitive landscape. As I like to tell my clients – “DevOps solves a business problem, not just a Dev or an Ops problem”.
In the new world order of micro services and containers, not being agile to address business needs translates financial losses directly or indirectly. And it is true that huge heritage footprints even for large enterprises. There is a separate conversation when exiting inheritance, while it is there, it cannot be made a bottleneck. So today, no matter which technology or mode an enterprise operates in, a DevOps-focused digital transformation is here and now.
The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines a dojo as “a school (as judo or karate) for training in the various arts of self-defense.” At ChefConf 2015, Adam Jacobs gave a very interesting talk titled “Chef Style DevOps Kungfu”, which talked about building his practice through repetition and skill development. Target Inc. took a hint from this and created a space to develop its own DevOps Kungfu – Dojo.
Dojo is the home base where dedicated content experts come together and fix automation frameworks and processes. Everyone from agile leaders, deployment specialists, infrastructure experts, middleware experts and database administrators contribute to the enterprise’s definition of “La La Land”. This is where DevOps champions are made. And the spread of the movement is strategic.
Devoops Dojo and Cha-Cha-Cha
Like all great symphonies, a successful DevOps conversion takes patience and practice. The practice of putting a dojo forward and persevering to establish it. Patience to cha-cha-cha an organization. Some things will work, some will not. Re-calibrate. be adjusted. Mold for your environment. Repeat
As long as you are committed to doing cha-cha-cha for a long time, it will happen. The rhythm will set. The build will be successful, one-touch deployment will work, and automatic rollback will be completed. And there will be magic, without downtime! Just dojo and cha-cha-cha long enough. The world is waiting to hear your story.