A developers blog

What the Heck are Pigs and Chickens?

By: Brad

Hey Brad my project manager keeps calling me a pig should I be offended? What the heck do they mean when they talk about Pigs and Chickens?

No you shouldn’t be offended :-), they are actually saying you have high value in your project; you have skin in the game as it were.

The term Pigs and Chickens is actually in reference to an old joke:


In the above comic strip the Chicken just has to lay eggs if the restaurant fails its no harm no Fowl for the chicken (pun intended). But for the Pig he had to commit fully to the restaurant (with his life) and if it failed the pigs personal sacrifice would have been in vain. The Pig is committed fully to the project and is an integral part of its day to day success where as a Chicken is only interested in the end result; they help out when they can but in general isn’t required on a day-to-day basis.

Examples of Pigs:

  • Developers
  • QA
  • Technical Writers
  • User eXperience Designers
  • Manufacturing Engineers
  • etc.

Examples of Chickens:

  • CEO
  • Directors
  • Marketing
  • Team/Project Managers – really, on a self organized team the manager isn’t needed day-to-day not to say they don’t have their incredibly important roles to play in the success of the project.
  • etc.

So that is what the heck Pigs and Chickens are, people who are committed to a project and people who are involved with a project. Next time your call a Pig ware that curly tail with pride.

Until next time think imaginatively and design creatively


My interest in computer programming started back in high school and Software Development has remained a hobby of mine ever since. I graduated as a Computer Engineering Technologist and have been working as a Software Developer for many years. I believe that software is crafted; understanding that how it is done is as important as getting it done. I enjoy the aesthetics in crafting elegant solutions to complex problems and revel in the knowledge that my code is maintainable and thus, will have longevity. I hold the designation Certified Technician (C.Tech.) with the Ontario Association of Computer Engineering Technicians and Technologists (OACETT), have been certified as a Professional Scrum Master level 1 (PSM I) and as a Professional Scrum Developer level 1 (PSD I) by as well as designated as an Officially Certified Qt Developer by the Qt Company. For more on my story check out the about page here

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