Trades: We All Do Them

Dwayne Phillips
1 min readApr 27, 2020


by Dwayne Phillips

Whatever method you use to accomplish your work, you are choosing it over something else. You gain something with your choice; you lose something with your choice. That is your trade.

“We do DevSecOps,” said one practitioner. “We do agile,” said another. “We do what we feel like doing everyday,” said a third.

Fine. What did you trade away to do what you are doing? The answer is usually a blank stare.

We choose what we choose because we want it on some day for some reason. We trade away something in return.

Agile is faster than waterfall in some situations. It is slower in other situations. The same is true for DevSecOps. The same will be true for whatever comes next.

Each method works better for some people in some situations at some times. Nothing is perfect, and pretending otherwise is merely pretending.

Iterative methods of all kinds lose efficiency when you know what you want. Step-by-step review methods lose efficiency in uncertainty. If you don’t believe me, let’s walk through some long examples.

We usually trade efficiency for certainty in methods. Sometimes we trade other more important things. Sometimes what we are trading is the presence of some people whom we like more than others. Ouch. That last one hurts, but sometimes it is true.



Dwayne Phillips

Engineer, computing, consulting, writing, teaching, and a few other things in an effort to make us all better and smarter.