Adventures in Product Development: Getting ready to ship

My 18 months at Yahoo! Personals has given me an appreciation for how product development teams are closely interconnected organisms that I didn’t quite have before.
I’ve started to think of our team as more of a hive than a factory–The planning for the applications we build is quite detailed in terms of the business case, and then the execution process is intricate and complex, with multiple pieces happening at one time, and yet everything is eventually orchestrated into a coherent sequence that ends up with the release committee, ready to ship–but what makes things really work is the shared sense of purpose, the committment and group mind, the determination to build and execute for a specific user value, a hoped-for business result.
We’re in the middle of our busiest quarter ever, where we’ve launched, or are launching new platforms and infrastructure, with features to follow(of course), and the scope of work we’re doing is large enough I keep joking we’re having twins. And yet, despite all the challenges to the schedule, our team keeps humming, focused on one result we all want to achieve (and that we all own and can be proud of.)
This might be the best group I’ve ever worked with; they are surely one of the best, and I keep learning from their passion and focus.
And I can’t wait till all this new stuff–at a time I can’t tell you yet–goes out the door!