Slicing the Sandwich

Which way do you slice a sandwich if you want to share it with your friends? Is that even a question, you think, right? Yeah. It can be, if you come from the world of software development trying to work with development teams for which you are playing the role of a product owner/manager or any other fancy designation that you may hold.

While it is obvious that you slice your sandwich vertically so that each slice carries all the essence of the original sandwich, when it comes to a software product, the details get between the knife and the table making it quite a daunting task.

If you consider your product as a sandwich, you will slice it vertically while serving it to your customers. But when you get into the kitchen, the story is completely different. There is a team that is good at baking and will produce the bread, there is a team that is harvesting, cleaning and cutting those greens and fresh vegies, there is another that team that is processing the meat you need, there is this diary department that is supplying cheese to the whole operations. All these products then feed into the assembly line team that assembles the sandwich that the customer ordered for.

So, if you were to slice your product, then do you want a set of teams that are responsible for the components and then a team that actually puts this all together as the “go to market” product? Or do you want every team to be building the sandwich, having free access to the inventory?

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