project management

The Bun Protocol

January 21, 2011

Henrik Kniberg comes up with an idea to handle client requests: You have 3 options: Eat it yourself Give it to somebody else Throw it away This is the same strand of thinking as the Monkey Management gurus and the “Getting Things Done” people. In general, all of these have answers to the same question: how […]

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Micromanaging Parents

January 11, 2011

Amy Chua is clearly insane and I am lucky I had way better parents: What Chinese parents understand is that nothing is fun until you’re good at it. To get good at anything you have to work, and children on their own never want to work, which is why it is crucial to override their […]

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Management Tension Index

November 1, 2010

An old folk tale goes like this: A shop owner was in his house when he heard a heavy cart rolling outside. Curious, he called one of his servants and asked him to find out about the cart. A few minutes later, the servant came back and replied, “The cart is carrying rice sacks.“ “Can you go […]

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Tracking Conversations

June 30, 2010

Steve Rowe has a management tip: When doing 1:1’s with your team (you are doing these regularly, right?), take notes to keep track of the conversations from week to week. I currently use a 5-tab notebook with one tab for each direct report. Each person has their own section. Each week when we meet, I […]

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Decision-Making Protocol

June 24, 2010

One of my acquaintances is fond of saying, “Employees view managers as monsters, at the worst, and idiots, at the best.” The point being that, even good managers have to overcome mistrust about their intentions and judgment before employees accept their decisions. When a manager’s request comes into conflict with the opinions of employees, buy-in […]

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Are We Safer By Abolishing Rules?

June 14, 2010

Jurgen Appelo writes: In a Dutch article titled “Traffic is safer without rules” traffic expert Hans Monderman explained that the flow of traffic at an intersection can increase, while at the same time casualty rates decrease, when all traffic lights and road signs are removed. The reason is that, in a situation without rules or […]

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What Good Bosses Should Believe

June 1, 2010

Bob Sutton is hard at work on a new book and has put together a set of key beliefs that good bosses have. My thoughts on some of them: 1) I have a flawed and incomplete understanding of what it feels like to work for me. 12) Because I wield power over others, I am at great […]

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The Quality Imperative

May 10, 2010

Alan Skorks has an interesting post on different ways to look at software development: (emphasis in the original) the majority of companies that build any kind of software are ‘software as a destination’ companies. […] On the other hand, most individuals who build software for those companies would instinctively like to be (and in many […]

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The Case For Better Management

March 8, 2010

Stephen Forte makes what he thinks is a case against having “rock-star” developers in a team. You can read the post, but, in short, there was a programmer “John” on his team who picked coding arguments with the rest of the team. The final straw was that John burnt the whole team by directly moving […]

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The Bigger Complexity Lies Outside Technology

November 26, 2009

From the Domain-Driven Design Site: [A] great deal of effort has gone into the design of networks, databases, and other technical dimension of software. Books have been written about how to solve these problems. Developers have cultivated their skills. Yet the most significant complexity of many applications is not technical. It is in the domain […]

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