The Cross Pollination Of API Knowledge Is The Most Important Part Of Your API Operations

October 1, 2018
We spend a lot of time working within different enterprise organizations. We see a lot of successful elements of API operations, and we also see many anti-patterns that help drag down organizations when it comes to moving forward with their API vision. One of the most important things we experience while working with groups who are further along in their API journey, and with organizations who are figuring out how to make change across the enterprise, are teams picking up their head from their work, paying attention to what other groups are doing, as well as what the rest of the API sector is up to.

These groups aren't just reading and tuning into what is going on, they are actively participating, sharing knowledge, and participating in external conversations. Successful API practitioners are attending conferences, meetups, and hackathons out in the real world, and helping drive conversations within the enterprise by actively participating in meetings with other groups, holding brown bag lunches, and ensuring that API knowledge spreads across the enterprise. Making sure best practices are known across the enterprise, and the challenges development groups are facing when it comes to delivering API infrastructure are well-known, and collectively handled.

Isolation is the enemy of successful API operations. The cross-pollination of API knowledge is essential to making all of this work. It is why public API providers like Twilio, Stripe, and other API rock stars have been able to achieve the success that they have. They are actively sharing their knowledge, and seeking out what is working elsewhere in the sector. Successful tech companies like Netflix have used this practice to attract the best talent, actively sharing their knowledge on their engineering blog, and via their GitHub repository, to lure the savviest API engineers to their team. This type of evangelism helps drive things publicly across an industry, as well as within large enterprise organizations, to push forward the API conversation across groups.

As we gear up for another of on our multi-day workshops within the enterprise, we wanted to take some time to highlight the importance of sharing knowledge. Bringing what we've learned across different industries, and by conducting workshops within the enterprise. We can't emphasize enough, the importance of opening your doors to outside knowledge in this way. Inviting API experience into your organization, but also hopefully taking your own experiences out into the world and sharing what you know with other enterprise groups. Contributing to the bigger picture, helping spread the nutrients needed to make APIs do what they do. Pollinating not just our own API operations, allowing them to grow, but also helping expand and grow the industries we operate within, which benefits all of us.

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