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7 Tips for Communicating with Your Developers

As a socially focused entrepreneur with a bold vision, your role is incredibly important in turning your idea into a reality. The project's success hinges on your ability to understand your users, build a great team, and effectively market your project. Your understanding of the mysteries of programming is not nearly as important.

That's where a reliable and effective software development company comes in. Hire (or partner with) a team that can deliver what you need without requiring you to get an advanced degree in tech jargon.

But even with a great team, communication problems can slow down or even sink a project, leaving all parties disillusioned and frustrated. Don't let this happen to you! Anticipating potential issues early "before they become big ones" is key to working smoothly together and saving your organisation time and money.

With that in mind, here are some key tips for communicating with your developers.

1. Work with people who share your values.

Communication becomes much easier when your software developers not only understand your vision, but share a commitment to the same things you value. Partnering with a team who genuinely cares about your project can make a big difference, not only in the end product, but in the process of getting there.

2. Stay in control.

You need to be assured that both psychologically and practically, you are in control of the project. Features, timescales, and the like should all be driven by you, not your coder. Their job is to find the technical solution to your problem, as well as keep you fully informed so that the project stays focused on what truly matters to you.

3. Remember that the code is not the goal.

Whether intentionally or not, coders can sometimes disappear down the trap of seeing the code as the ultimate goal. Keep him or her focused on the value to the end user. After all, your project is only a success when it delivers real benefits to its users.

4. Make sure you have access.

Ensure that you have ownership, control, and full access to domains, hosting, and source code. Even if you don't use them regularly, you should have logins and admin roles on the various accounts attached to your project.

5. Listen to your gut.

There are countless tales of someone ignoring a gut feeling and later discovering their gut was right. If any aspect of the process feels "off", pay attention and say something. Clear early communication will help prevent small issues from becoming big ones.

6. Fix problems early.

Speaking up early when things don't make sense helps ensure that small problems don't grow into big ones. If you have questions, it's the job of the developer to answer them honestly and openly and to address your concerns in a timely manner.

7. Know when to throw in the towel.

No coder is irreplaceable. When you've done all that you can on your end and the project still isn't coming together in a way that makes sense to you, it may be time to move on. Your project is important to you and you should feel assured that it's important to your software developers as well.

Which brings us right back to the top of this list.

Choose your development team wisely and you can head off a number of potential communication issues. When your coders share your vision of delivering real benefits to people by bringing your idea to life, it's far easier to get the results you're looking for.

Let's start communicating about your project. Contact us today!

About the author

Barry O'Kane

Barry O'Kane

Barry is the leader of the pack at Happy Porch. With over 15 years in the web development industry as a programmer and agency owner, he has a preternatural ability to decipher the systems and processes code that holds many teams back from achieving their goals. Partners say Barry gets to the root of issues quickly and makes it downright easy to deliver good work.    

While he's unbelievably grounded, it's not uncommon to find him sailing through the trees as he paraglides his way round the world.