Tech giants such as Google to Facebook are famous for hack-a-thons, all-night marathon coding sessions where eager employees build something unrelated to their current projects. While a break from the usual grind helps free programmers for more creative pursuits, the one day time-limit can stunt innovation and lead to only tiny breakthroughs.
For truly disruptive products, Facebook needed a truly disruptive practice, so they stretched the hyper-focused concept of the hack-at-thon another 29 days, where employees do nothing but intensively build out ambitious projects. Among hack-a-month's many successes is Facebook Deals, the Groupon-like daily deal feature that vaulted the social networking site into the e-commerce industry (check out MTV's coverage of a Facebook hack-a-thon below).
"I can't imagine [Facebook Deals] happening faster without hack-a-month," says engineering manager David Ferguson.
Tuesday, May 24, 2011
Facebook's Hack-A-Months Cause Disruption, Innovation | Fast Company