While the "lone ranger" archetype is very emotionally appealing, it must be remembered that a company is an engine that produces money. Nothing more, nothing less. As such, all decisions have to be made in terms of what will have the greatest ROI (Return On Investment). So, let's examine what is, in my experience, the most common "lone ranger" ROI.
There are 3 people on the team. Each person brings a ROI of $50k (meaning that the company gets $50k of value above what the company pays). The network effects each brings an additional $100k per connection. So, that's a total of $150k + $300k for $450k. Let's add the fourth person.
- If that person is a team player, then we get $50k for him plus $400k from the network effects.
- If that person is a lone ranger, then we get $250k for him plus $0k from the network effects.
That lone ranger just cost me $200k, even though he is personally 5x better. No, thank you.
As for malpractice ... I have a different take on that. Personally, I think that the risk of dying due to malpractice in the US is about on par with the risk of dying in an airplane. Now, I have no proof for this, but consider the following points:
- Most people who die in a doctor's care either would die within a year or should have died already.
- That 100k is out of how many people who see a doctor each year?
- How likely are those people to have kept themselves healthy prior to seeing a doctor?
- What is the incidence of malpractice death in other countries, specifically Scandinavia, Japan, and China?
Puts that number into perspective, doesn't it?
My criteria for good software:
- Does it work?
- Can someone else come in, make a change, and be reasonably certain no bugs were introduced?