Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Peopleware : Productive Projects and Teams” as Want to Read:
Peopleware : Productive Projects and Teams
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Peopleware : Productive Projects and Teams

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  6,156 Ratings  ·  337 Reviews
Peopleware asserts that most software development projects fail because of failures within the team running them. This strikingly clear, direct book is written for software development-team leaders and managers, but it's filled with enough commonsense wisdom to appeal to anyone working in technology. Authors Tom DeMarco and Timothy Lister include plenty of illustrative, of ...more
Kindle Edition, Second Edition, 245 pages
Published (first published January 1st 1987)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Peopleware , please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Peopleware

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-10)
Rating details
Sort: Default
Ben Haley
Mar 22, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Peopleware is something of a classic in the world of Development management and it makes sense why. The book is straightforward, short, practical and influential. Below I have summarized some of the major points of the book:

1. First ask: should it be done at all?
2. Protect your workers personal lives
3. Turnover is an expense which is seldom measured. Moving causes turnover. Training prevents turnover.
4. Workers will work for quality, to be and make the best.
5. Interruption is expensive for mind
Guilherme Ferreira
A must-read, one of the best books I have ever read. I recommend it for everyone that would wishing get out from the comfort zone in our development. This book presents the forgot notion that people are the core of development process. And the most incredible fact of this book is that he has more than forty years since his first publication and keeps unknown for a great part of our managers.
Natasha Hurley-Walker
Excellent. Must-read for anyone who manages, or is being managed. I now have a better feel for just why I hate my cubicle so much, and how it's not just impacting my work today, but my entire career, by dampening my creativity. I have to listen to music to drown out the background noise, and this occupies my right brain to the point where I'm probably missing some really clever shortcuts and insight in my work. "You'll get nothing done here between 9 and 5" really resonated with me: the most pro ...more
Got on my wish list via amazon lists, and based on the title "Peopleware", I thought it focussed a lot more on people interaction and how they act and react, and shape up to be a team. What I got was a book full of tips & tricks for large scale organizations on how to tell managers not to disturb people who are working.

The whole book can be summed up in one sentence: Managers work by letting other people work - they need to simply keep off al disruptive events so the team can do it's "thing
Nov 30, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
DeMarco/Lister sound so reasonable that it's hard not to take their theories as facts, but it's mostly anecdotal and should be taken with a grain of salt. In particular, some things that they treats as "teamicidal" are useful for other reasons.

I think clarifying how information is passed around in an organization would be useful–they point at it when they mention "coaching" but could be more explicit.

In general, a good book, and if you're a software engineer or a software engineering manager you
Richard Jeong
Apr 05, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: managers, workers,
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 conside
Arvydas Sidorenko
Oct 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: english-lang
It is basically a sociology within teams and projects with many great examples from real world and psychology applied. If you are in a management position I would say this is a must read gem for you. Author has great critical thinking and writes about workplaces, teams and projects in sometimes even radical way.

When it comes to work, I always used to put technology over everything, but it convinced me that sociology > technology. It is supposed to be productive, satisfying fun to work. If it
Yury Averkiev
Oct 31, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I wish two of my bosses had read this book back in the 1999
Juan Ignacio
Jan 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Better read at my technical blog


Peopleware is a book about sociology within software companies. The thesis is that projects fail because of “social” reasons, not technical ones.

Part I focuses on the individual. You must understand his or her motivations and perceptions to be able to act accordingly. What people builds, and how is it done (quality, deadlines…) has a huge impact on motivation.

Part II disembowels current trend of nasty open spaces at offices, and offers many improvements ove
Clark Mullen
Wonderful book. Covers many principles we know to be true on some deep level, yet are often forgotten or ignored.

Full of wisdom, kindness, and gentleness. Deeply inspiring. It has influenced how I think and help shape the goals for my life and career.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Rapid Development: Taming Wild Software Schedules
  • The Mythical Man-Month: Essays on Software Engineering
  • Joel on Software
  • Death March
  • Facts and Fallacies of Software Engineering
  • Refactoring: Improving the Design of Existing Code
  • Extreme Programming Explained: Embrace Change (The XP Series)
  • The Psychology of Computer Programming
  • Agile Software Development, Principles, Patterns, and Practices
  • Pragmatic Thinking and Learning: Refactor Your Wetware
  • Domain-Driven Design: Tackling Complexity in the Heart of Software
  • Implementing Lean Software Development: From Concept to Cash
  • Working Effectively with Legacy Code
  • Behind Closed Doors: Secrets of Great Management
  • Programming Pearls
  • Growing Object-Oriented Software, Guided by Tests
  • Beautiful Code: Leading Programmers Explain How They Think

Goodreads is hiring!

If you like books and love to build cool products, we may be looking for you.
Learn more »
Tom DeMarco is the author of fourteen books, including four novels, a collection of short stories and the rest business books. His most recent works are A Ruby Beam of Light and Airship Nation, two volumes of his series Dark World Chronicles. They tell of a world where most of the technology of the last hundred years has been rendered inoperable. Apocalyptic yes, but gently so: a world without gun ...more
More about Tom DeMarco...
“The manager’s function is not to make people work, but to make it possible for people to work.” 7 likes
“The fundamental response to change is not logical, but emotional.” 6 likes
More quotes…