Why the name ThoughtWorks?
I heard a speech in the early 1990s by Dee Hock, the founder of Visa. He had
said that if the 19th century was manufacturing and hardware, the 21st century
was going to be the century of "Thoughtware". I thought of creating
something on these lines that uses heart and head more than anything else. We
thought of putting ideas into practice, and so the company, ThoughtWorks, was
How different is your company from other software development
We are working towards creating a flat organization. Thirty percent of
Thoughtworkers have worked in countries other than their home country, 20 of
them live or work outside their home country every year. No company does this.
Every employee at ThoughtWorks rotates globally. The only regret I have is not
managing to recruit many women leaders in our company. But, in the ThoughtWorks
University, we have more women than men.
What is special about the way software is developed at
We have attained a high-level of innovation in the actual software process.
I think we are the leaders in that space. But, there is still a lot of scope for
improvement for the software processes to become mainstream. Only a very small
percentage of software has been infected with regional ideas. There is a huge
opportunity for the world to improve the way software is developed. This is a
problem that will take a long time to resolve. The IT industry has a lot to
learn from Toyota, which revolutionized the way a car is made.
You have criticized large software companies for not working
efficiently. Can you elaborate?
Some of the biggest companies are not bothered about all these, and have
focused on increasing their headcount to do all this. They are hurting the
productivity of the human society. Software can be developed much faster than
the amount of time the big companies take. Nobody is going to wait for a company
to build software in two years. The market and the needs are set to change in
these two years. The 19th century was about eliminating variation in production
while the 21st century is about managing variations to create products.