Internal Team Alignment

Internal team alignment refers to the methods to strengthen internal alignment within Stream Teams, fostering collective understanding, shared goals, and seamless collaboration. It ensures that every team member is on the same page, working towards common goals, and fully aware of the tasks and challenges ahead.


The purpose of internal team alignment is to create a cohesive team environment that maximises productivity and fosters an atmosphere of mutual support and understanding. Benefits include:

  • Enhanced Collaboration: Encourages open communication and teamwork.
  • Greater Efficiency: Streamlines workflows and reduces duplication of effort.
  • Improved Morale: Builds a positive work culture with shared goals.
  • Increased Agility: Enables the team to respond quickly to changes.


Industry Context

Product development is complex and requires the collaborative effort of multiple individuals with diverse skills and expertise. Handovers between team members slows down delivery, can lead to miscommunication, misunderstandings, and inefficiencies, and locks in a scope of work before it has been validated with customers.

ZeroBlockers Context

Stream Teams build solutions from idea to satisfied customers without any handovers between the specialists on the team. They recognise that we do not know what customers want until they have the product in their hands so they optimise for quick lead time. This means that everyone on the team needs to be in alignment on the problem, solution and approach so that there is seamless delivery.

ZeroBlockers Practices

Teaming (aka mob programming)The entire team collaborates on a single task or problem, leveraging diverse perspectives.
  • All the decision-makers are present so each task is completed quickly.
  • Reduces lost time from context switching caused by handovers.
  • Shares knowledge and expertise.
PairingTwo team members working together on tasks, sharing knowledge and expertise.
  • Reduces technical knowledge silos and increases distributed knowledge.
  • Increases code quality and reduces bugs.
  • Enhances team cohesion and collaboration.
Stream Team WorkspaceProvide transparent access to the Stream charter, kanban board, research and more.
  • Provides transparency for all of the activities being undertaken.
  • Ensures that Product and Stream Teams have access to the same information.


Pairing and Teaming sounds crazy when you first hear about them - how inefficient is it to have all of these highly paid people working on a single computer? However, the time developers spend writing code pales in comparison to all of the other work that goes on to build a product. Whether it is understanding the problem, ideating on solutions, evaluating assumptions, or designing the architecture there are a lot of other activities that go into building a product.

Unfortunately, scientific studies on efficacy are hard to produce as nobody builds the same thing twice with the same team (and manages to make them forget the first time). However, there are a number of anecdotally reported benefits to software teaming.

  • Smaller Code Bases: Code is a liability. If you can achieve the same functionality with less code this is a big improvement.
  • Higher Quality Designs: Working separately your code base includes the best (and worst) ideas of one person. Working together you get the best ideas of the whole team.
  • Fewer Bugs: With enough eyeballs all bugs are shallow.
  • More Distributed Knowledge: Knowledge silos are a big problem in software development. By working together you can ensure that everyone has a good understanding of the whole code base.

Other Practices

PracticeDescriptionZeroBlockers Opinion
Daily StandupA short, focused meeting to align the team on the day's work.Standups are great for teams where people work separately. But with ZeroBlockers our core goal is quick lead time so teams need to be working together with all of the decision-makers present.
Stage-Gate HandoversA formal process for transferring work between stages of the development process.This locks in a scope that we don't know is the best solution. We recommend that the team works together on the problem and solution so that there are no handovers.


  • Working in Silos: Failing to collaborate effectively within the team.
  • Lack of Communication: Not sharing updates, progress, or challenges.
  • Ignoring Feedback: Not taking into account the insights and suggestions from team members.
  • Resistance to Change: Not adapting to new information or feedback.
  • Over-reliance on Meetings: Consuming too much time in meetings, detracting from productive work.

Case Studies

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