I had a chance to play Cricket with the InfoSec India team this week. It was a great blast and it helped me frame an example I like to use to promote team work. Cricket, like a lot of sports, has many different roles that come together to make up a team. You have batsmen, bowlers, wicket-keepers and other field positions. You even have what they call “all-rounders” who are great at bowling as well as batting. Individually, they may all be starts but the real impact they can have is when they work together in this team collective.

It’s the same with our team; we have everything from developers, testers, architects to risk and awareness program managers and security and performance analyst and consultants. We even have certain all-rounders that may be good at development, code reviews and performance engineering. There are definitely stars as well as stars-in-the-making in each role on our team but it’s the impact we have as a collective that counts. Balanced security and performance are key principles both critically important, and it takes our whole team to achieve that balance.

Another important element for me is how each role takes on a heightened sense of need when it’s part of a team collective. Maybe the “coolest role” is of a football quarterback or a cricket bowler but without a football receiver or a cricket wicket-keeper, the team isn’t going to get very far.

It’s such a simple analogy and really isn’t even anything new, but it so nicely underlines the importance of team work that I like to reinforce it with my teams. As a fellow Chigao-ite named Michael Jordan once put it: “Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence wins championships.” :)