antifragility FAQ


How to build antifragile organisations?

Not many people know about the relationship between DevOps and antifragility. Actually a specific aspect of antifragility called Skin in the game.

The concept was already described by King Hammurabi in 1754 BC. He carved 282 laws in stone. The most famous is #225: "If a builder builds a house and the house collapses and causes the death of the owner of the house - the builder shall be put to death.”

As the builder feels the consequences of his actions, he will choose these with more care and be less tempted to hide imperfections.

This is where the DevOps relationship becomes obvious. Dev should be aware of the consequences of their actions for Ops. And Ops should be aware of the consequences of their actions for Dev. And awareness is not enough, they should also be responsible for the consequences of their actions. They should have skin in each others game.

The best way to do this is to create a cross-functional team from the existing Dev and Ops teams. This cross-functional team will be responsible for Development and Operations.

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However, DevOps extends far beyond the IT organisation. The need for collaboration extends to every software delivery stakeholder. Even BusDevSecOps would not cover it all. As a DevOps team could also be involved in conducting market research, refining the product vision, researching new tooling and supporting customers and answering their questions.

A DevOps team is actually a mini company.

T-shaped profiles will enable the team to remain small and still feel skin in the game.

Other examples that contribute to antifragility are:

  • reducing organisational debt
  • decentralised decision making
  • T-shaped profiles
  • shift left testing
  • continuous experimentation