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As a company, we are really uncomfortable with the status quo. It’s ingrained in every employee to look for a better way to do things. And that holds true for our Engineering Team.

We find new ways to code and develop software by learning from others in the software world. One way we do that is our Qualtrax Engineering Team Book Club.

We use books to stay current with the industry. Our book club helps us to learn industry best practices and find new ways of learning, thinking, and communicating.

This past year, we read four books as a team.

Each week we read a few chapters and one day a week we discuss what we read during lunch.

Though we sometimes disagree with the topic of a given book, we are able to appreciate those disagreements in a setting that doesn’t require immediate action. We view Book Club as a safe zone, were co-workers can discuss their thoughts without emotional investment in a current project.

The whole process of reading and sharing seriously affects our team:

  • The team gels more than it had without Book Club
  • New team members work better with older team members
  • Senior and Junior Engineers collaborate like they had been on the same team for years

It turns out we end up with a common perspective. We often reference our working ideas based on conversations stemming from the books. Even when we disagree with a given topic, we all appreciate what the books have to say and normally form team ideals while discussing topics in the books.

My encouragement to you is to start your own book clubs at work. I believe you will find some obvious benefits along with some not so obvious ones.

Happy reading!

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