people management


Management Myth 20: I Can Compare Teams (and It’s Valuable to Do So)

Johanna Rothman explains that you cannot measure what people do and expect that measure to be useful. Why? Because software is a team sport, and everything we do depends on other people.

Johanna Rothman's picture Johanna Rothman
DevOps and Dealing with Team Members How DevOps Can Help You Deal with Overly Aggressive Team Members

Leslie Sachs explains what to do when members of your team exhibit overly aggressive or downright combative behaviors. Because you’re unlikely to change your colleagues' modus operandi, it is wise to instead consider how your DevOps effort can benefit from taking into account some typical behaviors of people with Type A or Type B personalities.

Leslie  Sachs's picture Leslie Sachs
Management Myth #19: Management Doesn’t Look Difficult From the Outside, So It Must Be Easy

Johanna Rothman explains that management work is work, even if it appears that what managers mostly do is run from meeting to meeting. Management work is all about facilitating the work of other people, and when you perform great management, your team can create great products.

Johanna Rothman's picture Johanna Rothman
Management Myth #18: I Can Move People Like Chess Pieces

It’s impossible to please everyone in an organization. If someone comes to you with a reasonable-sounding request, such as to move a tester or a developer to a project, you need to examine whether the request is actually so reasonable. Management is not about being nice to everyone all the time. Much of management is about saying no when you have to. Johanna Rothman gives you some advice.

Johanna Rothman's picture Johanna Rothman
Dare to Say Stop!

Naomi Karten shares some stories about handling coworkers and managers with negative, problematic behaviors. Sometimes the best way to deal with complainers or bullies is to just say "stop." Of course, that's easier said then done.

Naomi Karten's picture Naomi Karten
Can You Manage Business Analysts without Measuring Them?

Kent McDonald writes on how to manage business analysts without measuring them. You can do so if you view management as helping business analysts improve their skill sets while helping them be productive members of their team. If, however, you view business analysts as “resources,” you will more than likely find individual measurements quite useful.

Kent J. McDonald's picture Kent J. McDonald
What Position Do You Play in Software? What Position Do You Play?

Micheleen Merritt explains that as an agile coach, you need to take into account all of the participants of a team, not just the developers. If you aren’t acknowledging the quality assurance analysts, business analysts, and product owners, you aren’t coaching the whole team.

Mickey Merritt's picture Mickey Merritt
 Geographically Distributed Agile Team Primary Getting the Most Out of Your Geographically Distributed Agile Team

Shane Hastie and Johanna Rothman explain the challenges that come with distance, be it cultural, social, linguistic, temporal, or geographic. If you work to reinforce your collaboration habits every day, your geographically distributed agile team will thank you.

Management Myth 17: I Must Solve the Team’s Problem for Them

Everyone wants to be helpful, and that includes managers, middle managers, and senior managers. But the more managers interfere with a team’s growth, the less a team learns how to perform. Managers do not have to solve a team’s problems.

Johanna Rothman's picture Johanna Rothman
Management Myth 16: I Know How Long the Work Should Take

The longer a manager has been away from technical work, the less the manager still knows the technical details. And—as we all know—for software, the details matter. If you have a manager who insinuates himself into your work, ask that manager what he wants. As long as managers trust in their project teams, and as long as those project teams work to earn trust, both sides can work together.

Johanna Rothman's picture Johanna Rothman


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