Signal v. Noise: “Once a six week cycle is over, we take one or two weeks off of scheduled projects so everyone can roam independently, fix stuff up, pick up some pet projects we’ve wanted to do, and generally wind down prior to starting the next six week cycle. Ample time for context switching. We also use this time to firm up ideas that we’ll be tackling next cycle.”
One of the benefits of having a successful product is not having to hustle work. I always loved this about my early days at Visio. We were on a one year cycle. We would release a version, spend the next few months going over what was next, working casually on fixes or new features, then we’d launch into building the next version. It felt perfect and as a company we were always on time.
I love what Basecamp is doing. They’re obviously a highly capable team that understands what they’re able to deliver in a six week cycle. A lot of us attempt to practice Scrum and fail miserably at it, so we never know how long something is going to take. This team is actually pulling it off with their own “methodology”, and that’s all that matters.
I would encourage you to read the entire article. It’s full of all kinds of little gems.