project manager

Software development process standard operating procedures

Some long time ago I was working on a large software development project, and I wasn’t happy with either the quality or the velocity of our programming effort. So one night I sat down and tried to work out an activity diagram to show what our software development process needed to be, to improve both speed and quality. It turns out that a lot of this is just common sense, but for some reason or another team members would try to circumvent the process, which always led to more pain for everyone involved.

This is a page from my book, “A Survival Guide for New Consultants”

You can’t always save the client

“When you can do nothing, what can you do?”

A Zen koan

As I’ve mentioned, you’re hired to be a consultant because you’re a problem-solver, so it really hurts when you can’t help a client. It’s a tough lesson, but it’s an important one:

Despite your best efforts,
you can’t always save the client.

This is a page from my book, “How I Sold My Business: A Personal Diary”

Friday, November 12, 2004

Some times things work out so badly all you can do is laugh. After talking to the local programmer/project-manager I mentioned earlier, we finally had a chance to hire him, and it was a disaster. He had been a lead engineer with a dot-com company that went bust, and while he was reluctant to work as a consultant, he also needed the income, so we brought him on as a contractor before making him a full-time employee.

This is a page from my book, “How I Sold My Business: A Personal Diary”

Saturday, September 28, 2002

Arghhhh ... the project manager I've been trying to recruit most of the month just turned me down.

I'm upset with him, but really, I'm just upset at our situation. He seemed like the next "technical project manager" I was looking for, and losing him also means losing a chance to hire several new employees he could manage. We need someone like him to grow the company, and I'm just upset at not being able to hire him, or someone like him.

Mon, Oct 7, 2002

One thing leads to another, leads to ... a few "best practices" web sites. Both christine.com and the Software Program Managers Network offer a little insight into the goo that makes managers -- and developers -- happy. Christine is looking a little dated, but there may be something useful in there.