Todo Mejora is a Chilean LGBTQIA+ advocacy foundation that aims to promote the well-being of children, adolescents and young people who suffer harassment and suicidal behavior due to discrimination based on their orientation, identity and gender expression. They wanted to set up a support platform in the shortest possible time to help members of the LGBTQIA+ community in Chile facing mental health issues. They sought Thoughtworks’ help to create this critical infrastructure.
The Thoughtworks team had just three weeks to deliver an MVP (minimum viable product). How did they achieve this feat?
Cecilia Geraldo, Senior Developer Consultant, shares her experience working on this project and the impact it has had on her personal and professional growth:
Through a collaborative dynamic where everyone contributed through their capabilities and knowledge, we were able to adapt to the changes and needs of the client with ease and address the complexities that arose during the implementation. This was in part due to the pleasant and trusting atmosphere we cultivated as a team: communication, collaboration and teamwork were key to achieving success.
We encountered many obstacles in the short timeframe such as not having deep knowledge of the technologies that came from the legacy product. We had to ask for support from everyone, putting together work tracks for specific jobs, according to each person’s knowledge. At times, we even leveraged folks from outside of our team who had specific skill sets.
We were a large group of people who came together without time for team building, work agreement sessions and the initial technical decision-making due to an inherited code. Also, most of the team was facing their first project post-Thoughtworks University, this is our immersive entry-level program designed to prepare graduates for life as a Thoughtworker. Since these team members were on-boarded onto their first project we did not have the ability to create personalized growth spaces for each of the members.
To address these challenges and to ensure that everyone on our team had opportunities for growth, we developed a product development plan that included mapping out individual growth expectations and promoting leadership roles in technical and research aspects. As a result, we were able to recognize the innate leadership abilities and talents of our team members, which helped us to achieve our goals and generate growth opportunities for everyone involved.
Looking back, I realize that this project not only allowed me to contribute as a technologist but enhanced my strategy and planning skills. It also gave me experience in leading a team in an uncertain scenario, which required effective communication and active listening. The confidence that we built as a team was crucial to our successful project delivery, as it instilled self-confidence, confidence in each other, and confidence in the path that we were taking.
Reflecting on our work together, I'm especially proud of the great challenges we tackled as a team, fueled by the shared belief that we were working towards a common goal. It's amazing to see how far we've come and the successful results we've achieved. Currently, the ‘La Hora Segura’ free psychological support line is available via the web and mobile app. It is providing a safe and confidential space for LGBTIQ+ individuals to seek help. The platform has been operational since November 22, 2022 and has received a total of 656 conversations to date.
Disclaimer: The statements and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the positions of Thoughtworks.