Mantle and Lichty have assembled a guide that will help you hire, motivate, and mentor a software development team that functions at the highest level. Their rules of thumb and coaching advice are great blueprints for new and experienced software engineering managers alike. Tom Conrad, CTO, Pandora I wish I'd had this material available years ago. I see lots and lots ofmeat' in here that I'll use over and over again as I try to become a better manager. The writing style is right on, and I love the personal anecdotes. Steve Johnson, VP, Custom Solutions, DigitalFish All too often, software development is deemed unmanageable. The news is filled with stories of projects that have run catastrophically over schedule and budget. Although adding some formal discipline to the development process has improved the situation, it has by no means solved the problem. How can it be, with so much time and money spent to get software development under control, that it remains so unmanageable? InManaging the Unmanageable: Rules, Tools, and Insights for Managing Software People and Teams , Mickey W. Mantle and Ron Lichty answer that persistent question with a simple observation: You first must make programmers and software teams manageable.
"Managing the Unmanageable is a well-written, must-have reference book for anyone serious about building sustainable software teams that consistently deliver high-quality solutions that meet expectations. It is loaded with incredibly useful and practical tips and tricks to deal with real-life situations commonly encountered by software managers anywhere in the world. It tearlessly peels back the onion layers of the process of managing software developers-whether a handful of co-located programmers or thousands dispersed across the world-through a balance of battle-tested approaches and keen understanding of the various personalities and backgrounds of software team members. Finally, a book on software engineering that focuses on the manager''s dilemma of making a team of programmers work efficiently together. Every single software manager should have it on their bookshelf."
-Phac Le Tuan, CTO, Reepeet, and CEO, PaceWorks
"Becoming a great engineering leader requires more than technical know-how; Ron and Mickey''s book provides a practical cookbook for the important softer side of engineering leadership, which can be applied to any software development organization."
-Paul Melmon, VP of Engineering, NICE Systems
"EXCELLENT. Well-structured, logical, filled with great personal color and many little gems. You guys have done a great job here. Terrific balance between theory and practice, rich with info."
-Joe Kleinschmidt, CTO and cofounder, Leverage Software
"I started reading the nuggets section and it took fewer than four pages to improve my thinking. What struck me about the nuggets was that I could sense the genesis of this book: two masters of their craft learning from each other. Most books feel like a teacher describing a sterile version of what ''ought to be done'' that leaves you wondering, ''Will this work in the "real world"?'' Reading the nuggets felt like the sort of guidance that I would get from a trusted mentor. A mentor who I not only trusted, but one who trusted me to take the wisdom, understand its limits, and apply it correctly. It''s concentrated like a Reader''s Digest for technical management wisdom."
-Mike Fauzy, President and CTO, 1stMediCall LLC
"Managing the Unmanageable is a great collection of sometimes-obvious and sometimes-not-obvious guidance for software managers. I wish that I had had this book when I first started managing teams, and it still is illuminating. for programmers who step into management, the hardest thing is to learn the soft skills. Ron and Mickey do a great job of illustrating not just the why but also the how."
-Bill Hofmann, Vice President of Engineering, Klamr.to
"Unique dialogue around the human aspects of software development that is very much overdue."
-Mark Friedman, CEO and founder, GreenAxle Solutions
". . . [W]hat to do on the new employee''s first day of work seems unique and very helpful!"
-Steven Flannes, Ph.D., Principal, Flannes & Associates
"The book provides insight to a unique group of people: programmers. Companies around the planet have and are still struggling with how to best develop software products. Managing programmers is at the heart of developing software products successfully. Many project and organization leaders are ill-equipped to deal with programmers and software development in general. I think this book can bring insight to leaders of software organizations and help them understand and even get inside the head of programmers and therefore be more effective leaders."
-Michael Maitland, CEO (geek-in-charge), WhereTheGeeksRoam
"I have enjoyed reading the book very much, and I wish I had it ten years ago-probably would have saved me from making certain mistakes. A lot of what I read is not new to me, but I have never seen so much relevant material assembled in one book. the book was just what I needed. I already feel that I''ve benefited from it."
-David Vydra, Continuous Delivery Advocate and Software Craftsman, TestDriven.com
"I am finding the reading helpful to me right now-it has heightened my sensitivity to staff, even having managed for decades."
-Margo Kannenberg, Assistant Director, Application Development, HighWire Press
"Mickey was my manager in my first role as programming manager. His real-world, pragmatic, hands-on guidance was a profound positive influence on everything I''ve ever done with management since. His is still my go-to advice as I develop and mentor managers. I''m pleased that he''s taken the time to canonize it in this book so that many more new and experienced managers can benefit from it."
-H.B. Siegel, CTO, IMDB.com (a wholly owned subsidiary of Amazon)
"I just wish that I had this book when I started as a first-time manager five years ago!"
-Kinnar Vora, VP, Product Development & Operations, Sequoia Retail Systems
"Mantle and Lichty cut through abstract principles and present proven techniques that can increase the effectiveness of software development organizations. It deserves a place on the real (or virtual) bookshelf of every software manager who wants to build an outstanding development team and create a culture where everyone enjoys coming to work. It''s especially valuable in telling managers what not to do, and how to address the inevitable problems that affect all organizations."
-Anthony I. (Tony) Wasserman, Professor of Software Management Practice, Carnegie Mellon University-Silicon Valley; ACM Fellow; and IEEE Life Fellow
"Mickey was there on Long Island in the mid-1970s when the group now known as Pixar first formed, delivering successful software products then, and was still doing so, as manager, almost two decades later at Pixar itself. He knows what he''s talking about."
-Alvy Ray Smith, cofounder of Pixar
"Ron and Mickey clearly understand how important it is for programmers to work on projects that make a difference and how essential it is for managers to create and foster a unique and innovative culture."
-Kathy Baldanza, VPE, Perforce Software
"This book is a treasure trove of real-world experiences that will make you a more effective software development manager."
-Chris Richardson, founder of the original CloudFoundry.com, and author, POJOs in Action
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Addison Wesley Professional
September 21, 2012
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