Posts Tagged “management”

In economics there is a law of diminishing returns. The more workers you throw in a factory the more productivity you get until you pass a point of optimum performance after which, with each additional worker added, average output per worker actually drops. Most of us realize that this scenario applies directly to software development teams. In the last few months, however, I have had to remind myself that this same scenario also applies to the individual. Read the rest of this entry »

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Whether you are an individual team member or a department manager, just about all of us–at one time or another–have been asked to produce an estimated work plan for some project or deliverable. And just about all of us-—at one time or another–have opened up Excel or Project, thrown in ten or a hundred tasks, slapped absolute-guess-estimates on each task, scrutinized the total until feeling comfortable with it, published the plan to get that manager or sponsor off our back, then moved on to actually doing the work, and never looked at that plan ever again.

This is not planning. This is storytelling. And it can kill your project. All of us have done it with small stuff. I’ve done it with small stuff. But some of us–I’d wager–have done it with 10 million dollar projects. And storytelling killed those projects, too. Read the rest of this entry »

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One could argue that Traditional Management arose from a concerted attempt by executives and directors to get reliable budget forecasts, staffing requirements, delivery date forecasts and quality commitments from development teams. They need this information to manage the company’s budget, growth, strategic direction and overall product delivery. When they don’t get this information–or don’t trust what they get– executives and directors institute rigid and often uncompromising processes on their development staff to wrest this data from their teams and to approve and steer projects. Read the rest of this entry »

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