SacrificeOnePerson

Assign just one person to a distraction until it gets handled

Definition                  

Even small distractions must be handled. But they take time away from the primary task. In particular, any distraction, even a small one, disrupts "flow" time, which costs significant additional time to regain.  Assign just one person to a distraction until it gets handled.

Source

Sacrifice One Person

Discussion

Distractions are disruptive.  In addition to the time taken to handle the distraction, there is additional time to regain the flow of thought that one had on the problem one was addressing.  There are numerous ‘flow of thought’ protection micro-techniques that try and give a developer about a 2-hour run at a problem clear of distractions.  See also GateKeeper and FireWall, that deal with distractions from outside, also MercenaryAnalyst and DayCare, that split off ‘distracting’ work to specialist roles. 

 

Fixing bugs while developing the next release is a common example of this type of disruptive distraction, and it is worth taking care to gather metrics in a way that does not disrupt.