Developer Conflicts: The Scourge of Developer Productivity

By Emmanuel Abba

Elevator Pitch

Anytime a team of software developers set out to work on a problem, there is always conflicts on how to solve it, the method to use, tools & technology or even the basic understanding of the problem. Identifying the and resolving these conflicts effectively will aid cheating the developer experience


Conflicts are a major part of the developer experience.

To maximize productivity during software development, it is important to identify and mitigate the amount and frequency of conflicts that may arise in various phases of developmental activities.

Conflicts in development teams can be as numerous as the number of available stacks to code the solution in or just as simple (Is it?) as picking between GitHub or Bitbucket for version control or PHP vs Nodejs for back-end development. These sorts of disagreement are more common with agile software development scenarios but should be expected in all software development endeavors and if not identified and effectively resolved can bring a project to a halt. These conflicts range from

  • Vision disagreement
  • disagreements on implementable Features
  • Technical disagreements
  • Personality conflicts, Among others

During this talk, You will learn hacks and tricks that will help you identify and minimize conflicts before and during development.

Since conflict cannot be avoided, ensuring they are kept to a minimum will help mitigate their effects on attaining project goals. You will also learn how to do this by Creating a shared vision for the team and Delegating Authority as much as possible. Finally, what should be done when conflicts occur? Developers must learn to appreciating diversity in development teams and put effort into understanding causes of conflict. A lot of other effective conflict resolution techniques that will improve developer experience will be shared during this talk.


Haven been working in a collaborative development environment for over 6 years, i have experienced a lot conflicts which left unresolved caused major and minor difficulties before and during development. The most recent conflict I encountered was working with a team of Australian e-Learning consultants with a Nigerian based team from different backgrounds. Knowing that conflicts was inevitable, We identified possible sources of conflicts a the start of the project: hosting platforms to use, colors, logo, documentation styles, etc. By identifying the possible conflicts before the project, we were able to work harmoniously physically and remotely in achieving developmental objectives.