Saturday, July 21, 2007

Managing Humans

Managing Humans
Biting and Humorous Tales of a Software Engineering Manager
Michael Lopp


This was a Joel reading recommendation that panned out very well.  There were many reflections of my career that I found between the pages.  More than once I found myself either laughing out loud or cringing at memories the author brought back.

Managing Humans is a great read, not only for those who might be in a management position, and want to know how to handle the "Monday Freakout", but also for those in the individual contributor position and want to understand why "Managers are not Evil" and why you don't want to wind up like "Fez".

I do believe the author is too critical on himself throughout the book when he is unable to find that one thing that makes a "Fez" tick and get them motivated in growing with the business instead of being inevitably left behind.  Or, maybe that's just the sign of a great manager.

Either way, you'll probably pick it up and burn through it pretty fast.  However, stop to re-read chapter 16: "Malcom Events".  They happen everywhere, whether you actually realize it or not, but now you have a name for it and the author offers some sound advice on avoiding them.  A co-worker has the uncanny ability to successfully identify "Malcom Events" (not named as such) at our office.  He doesn't call them that, but has accurately predicted several over the course of the years of us working together (sometimes months in advance).  Some people are just more sensitive to disturbances in the Force than others, I guess.  I'll keep up my training...

Monday, July 16, 2007

BizTalk 2002 Nov. 2001-Jul. 2007 RIP

Kudos' to the Mary Kay Integration Team for hitting a significant milestone today!  They have finished successfully migrating a large BizTalk 2002 implementation to BizTalk 2004. 

As most of you know, the upgrade path from version of BizTalk prior to BizTalk 2004 posed some significant challenges.   For various reasons, there were many BizTalk 'applications' that were left behind as the rest of the business moved forward to take advantage of new BizTalk versions. 

Now that those 'legacy' bits have been upgraded that leaves us a clean upgrade path to BizTalk 2006, and a single BizTalk environment globally, for the time being anyway!

Way to go guys!