What Does DevOps Culture Feel Like?

I recently presented a webinar on What Does DevOps Culture Feel Like? in which I attempted to characterise what it feels like to work within a DevOps culture (part of the Experience DevOps workshop series).

The webinar concludes that DevOps culture feels like:

  • A sports team playing to win
    • Multi-part objective: score, prevent loss
  • A band of musicians
    • In time, in tune, ‘in the groove’
  • A reliable vehicle
    • Repairs done, journeys completed
  • Never ‘them’ or ‘they’
    • ‘Us’ or ‘we’ instead
  • Ops pairing with Devs on code
  • Ops using version control (!)
  • Devs concerned with operability
  • No ‘project code’ or budget conflicts

Introductory text:

Ask any of the folks at the heart of the DevOps movement which aspect of Culture, Automation, Measurement, and Sharing (CAMS) is the best predictor and enabler of DevOps success, and probably each one of them will say “Culture”. DevOps guru John Willis (@botchagalupe) says “if you don’t have culture, all automation attempts will be fruitless.” That’s right; no amount of Puppet, Chef, Ansible, Amazon EC2, OpenStack, or any other infrastructure automation or metrics tooling will by itself lead to real, sustainable DevOps practices, not without an appropriate organisational culture.

In this webinar we’ll explore what is DevOps culture, why it’s important, and how it differs from many typical organisational cultures and why. We’ll see some simple things we can do to help nurture a DevOps culture within our organisations, and investigate some collaboration and team patterns which can help to change behaviour to encourage DevOps to flourish.

The accompanying slide deck is on Slideshare:

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