If you name it, it can be followed

Imagine you hear about a new take on how to do quality assurance. It takes testing, and puts such a prolific spin on risk identification and mitigation, that it blows your mind. You are pumped and ready to share this amazing philosophy with the world.

You are then asked… “What is this thing called… I’d like to read up on it”.

You are stumped… not because you can’t remember, or you are ashamed of what they will see when they google it. No, you are stumped because it doesn’t have a name.

You try and save it by saying “It doesn’t have a name, it is a collection of thoughts that I heard this one time”. And you can almost see your own credibility, and any interest melt away.

A name is a symbol… a flag… a beacon. 
A way for one tribe-member to identify another. 
A way for an outsider to try on the suit of beliefs to see if it fits.

We didn’t really need to name waterfall until Agile came along to have a common language for the eventual paradigm shift.

We didn’t really need to name “On premise” software until “Cloud-based” came along to show the world the contrast.

We didn’t really need to name 2nd generation management techniques, until Deming and his Lean approach to manufacturing (which empowered the foundation workers and sparked the “Servant Leader” movement as well).

We name things so that we can wave the flag of a shared belief.

The ProdDev playbook movement will help us name the different aspects of the ProdDev lifecycle, and therefore allow us all to discuss, compare, contrast, and try on different “belief garments” to see what our specific style truly is.