Jul 25, 08
Read in July, 2008
Written for software developers in a project sense, it is of much more global impact to skills managers & leaders need. This is the reference book (among several) that any working person should read, as it provides insight into how our managers can work better and how eventually we can be better managers. The snapshot it provides is the reference managers need to work effectively.
What DeMarco and Lister have provided is what could be read as a field manual for managers. Indeed if you consider that the some parts of US military is extremely effective at creating leaders and innovators (in addition to creating mega-bureaucracies and contradicting the innovation), then you can see how much management is a commonality that the military codified and mastered. Esprit de corp, small units, independence and responsibility, etc. are all elements that military's use, not because they developed them, but because they recognize they are a commonality in human management.
Of course this analogy can only be taken so far, but what DeMarco and Lister have provided is powerful deductive analysis based on the best theories we have, experience of effective management, and as much data as they could absorb. What's more they didn't jargonize it beyond the layman's ability to read, it's a book for anyone (as it should be). With over 50% of the business in the US being classified as small businesses, the ones who need to learn this are not highly educated business men (although I'm sure this wouldn't hurt many) it is the mom & pop shops that drive our economy.
I hope they are compelled to update this and write a 3rd edition, perhaps toned less for the software developers and more for the general public.