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Qn to Author: What is the book really about

 
Kishore Dandu
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Since it is not yet published(so no user reviews), I would like to know the target audience for this title.

And also if you can explain its value proposition, that will be great.
 
Lasse Koskela
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Did you read the full description at Amazon.com?
Anyway, I suspect the target audience is someone who's determined to introduce new ideas into an organization. It's a "peopleware" book that tells you what kind of problems to expect and how to tackle the resistance. I haven't seen the book either, but knowing that Linda is a smart gal, I'm quite confident that it's a good read. At least her presentation with Mary Lynn Manns back at XP2004 last summer was brilliant and a lot of fun
 
friso dejonge
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Hi,

Most people with a bit of experience, whether or not in the software industry have seen the issues this book adresses. When changing jobs, projects, companies etc, most people will pick up best pratices (like integrated testing) and try to introduce these in new environments.

One of the easiest examples would be -from a few years ago- when unit testing wasn't main stream. Try to explain developers they have to write tests, or even better, try to explain that they have to write tests before writing the code. There is no easy way to explain or create a 'win-win' situation in such a discussion.

So hopefully this book will give insight in this.
regards,
friso
 
Ilja Preuss
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Originally posted by Kishore Dandu:
Since it is not yet published(so no user reviews)


I submitted my review yesterday (got an e-book from the publisher). I hope it will be published soon. The book will get the full 10 horseshoes from me (which doesn't happen often).

I would like to know the target audience for this title.


Did you ever think "if we just did x, everything would be better"? Perhaps you even told people about it - and everything went on as before?

The book will explain to you why change is so hard and give you techniques at hand to overcome those obstacles.

Personally, I've used some of those techniques (without knowing about the book) to introduce Pair Programming, Continuous Integration and Test Driven Development at work, for example. I'm confident that having read the book (and looking up ideas from time to time) will help me using those techniques more effectively - and using them in concert with additional ones.

Examples from the book include the formation of the international Multiple Sclerosis Society, the introduction of the J2EE patterns and the creation of a Customer Training department in a company.
 
Kishore Dandu
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Originally posted by Ilja Preuss:


Did you ever think "if we just did x, everything would be better"? Perhaps you even told people about it - and everything went on as before?

The book will explain to you why change is so hard and give you techniques at hand to overcome those obstacles.

Personally, I've used some of those techniques (without knowing about the book) to introduce Pair Programming, Continuous Integration and Test Driven Development at work, for example. I'm confident that having read the book (and looking up ideas from time to time) will help me using those techniques more effectively - and using them in concert with additional ones.

Examples from the book include the formation of the international Multiple Sclerosis Society, the introduction of the J2EE patterns and the creation of a Customer Training department in a company.


My question is more like "if the immediate upper management + until 2-3 ranks above have no clue about TDD, Unit testing, RUP, XP etc. Does this books give me tips to make them here me???".

Let me give a bad feedback from a collegue "These guys gave me verbal requirements. When I asked for more details, they sent me a 3 line email", how can we change this kind of stuff???
 
Ilja Preuss
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Originally posted by Kishore Dandu:
My question is more like "if the immediate upper management + until 2-3 ranks above have no clue about TDD, Unit testing, RUP, XP etc. Does this books give me tips to make them here me???".


Yes, I think the book would help you. It won't make them hear and understand you immediately, but it will show you ways to introduce them (and others who will need to know about it) to your idea step by step.

No book in the world will make change fast, effortless or even painless (one of the patterns from the book is called "Shoulder to Cry On"). This one is likely to improve your chance of success, though.

Let me give a bad feedback from a collegue "These guys gave me verbal requirements. When I asked for more details, they sent me a 3 line email", how can we change this kind of stuff???


Well, in that case I'd probably start with "Just Do It": Write down the requirements at the level of detail you need - guess where necessary. Then ask those guys to review it with you. With some luck they will learn what you need that way. It might help if some of your guesses were blatantly wrong...
[ October 05, 2004: Message edited by: Ilja Preuss ]
 
Lasse Koskela
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Originally posted by Kishore Dandu:
Let me give a bad feedback from a collegue "These guys gave me verbal requirements. When I asked for more details, they sent me a 3 line email", how can we change this kind of stuff???

How about asking smaller questions? If all the manager feels like writing at a time is 3 lines, then try to give her the questions in small enough pieces that she can answer to with those 3 lines.

I'm only half-joking here. If that's the way the manager is, it's usually the developer who needs to adapt.
 
Linda Rising
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To answer your excellent question about the audience (unfortunately, many books about change are for management) -- my co-author, Mary Lynn Manns, and I began this book because we were developers (I like to use the term "powerless leaders," stolen from my friend, Norm Kerth) and yet we wanted our organizations to see a "better way." The patterns are based on the experience of guys in the trenches -- although, they can be used by anyone. The patterns build a grassroots effort, which I believe is the only way real change happens. Of course, to have wide influence, you will need management support, but anyone can use these patterns.
 
Kishore Dandu
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Originally posted by Linda Rising:
To answer your excellent question about the audience (unfortunately, many books about change are for management) -- my co-author, Mary Lynn Manns, and I began this book because we were developers (I like to use the term "powerless leaders," stolen from my friend, Norm Kerth) and yet we wanted our organizations to see a "better way." The patterns are based on the experience of guys in the trenches -- although, they can be used by anyone. The patterns build a grassroots effort, which I believe is the only way real change happens. Of course, to have wide influence, you will need management support, but anyone can use these patterns.


May be its just me!!

I sometimes get a feeling "70% of upper management are dumb and/or not worried about the life of developers" they just care about getting things done in a time frame(shelved on them by the upper-upper management who think the process is actually followed).

If there is a ethics court, the managers who give work without proper requirements(and expect developers can work late nights to get things done) should be sent to jail or at the least they should take cut from their pay check.
 
Linda Rising
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Comments like the one from Kishore are common. This isn't a perfect world and I've lived long enough to see that it can't be. I have however, seen that people will surprise you. The most gratifying thing about our business is that I believe that the people in it (for the most part) want to do the best job they can. I also believe that the people we work with are smart and hard-working. If you can hold these beliefs, you have a chance of using the patterns in Fearless Change to make your team and your organization better.

Don't sell anyone short. Don't make assumptions about what others (even management :-)! are thinking. Give everyone the benefit of the doubt. A positive approach is not just wishful thinking, it is productive. We are all at our best when we take a positive approach.
 
Kishore Dandu
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Linda:

thanks for ur comments on my most recent outburst.
 
Linda Rising
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Hi Kishore,

I'm glad to answer your comment. We are all seeing less than ideal environments in our work these days. Your comment represents what a lot of people are thinking.

I like to watch the "Red Green Show." Red always has advice for "middle-aged guys" where he says, "Remember, I'm pullin' for you. We're all in this together." My sentiments exactly.

If you don't know Red Green, he builds wonderful things using duct tape :-)!

http://www.redgreen.com/
 
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