Clearing Your Backlog

Backlog

an accumulation of something, especially uncompleted work or matters that need to be dealt with.

We all have one, possibly in many forms;

  • To do lists
  • Task reminders
  • Goals for the Day
  • Weekly To Dos
  • Ideas for the future
  • Sticky notes or Online Cards

At the end of the day it is your system for you manage all that you want to do but you invariably do not have time to finish in one day, week or month.  When you log onto your computer each day it stares at you in the face, daring you to do something about it – “Come on, try me, you know it’s going to take 3 hours to finish it and you only have 1”.  Time constraints aside sometimes it is more a function of looking at your backlog and thinking – “what is this?  why did I write this down?  what was that grain of wisdom I had?” – and you leave it there.  Each time you login it serves to remind you again and again  of it being there – taking up space in your head trying to figure out what it was and could be.

And sometimes you just have to sweep it under the rug and call it a day.  If you can’t remember it now or for the past 4 weeks, you are not going to remember it and all it’s doing is cluttering your view of what you need to do.

I did that today, I cleared out the backlog on what I have on my plate and threw a slew of “stuff” out the window.  In software we should look to do that with bugs and features as well so we avoid working on something that was requested 3 – 4 years ago that no one wants.

Some guidelines on bugs and features;

  • Has anyone asked for it in the past year?
  • Has anyone attempted to do anything on it?
  • Are planning on rebuilding the product that would render this bug mute?
  • Does the person who logged the bug still think it is something that needs to be done?

Answered no to some of those?  Consider purging from your backlog and start making room for some really meaty work to be done.

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *