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Crash Course:
Managing Software People & Teams
Ron Lichty | Ron Lichty Consulting
Ron@RonLichty.com | ronlichty.com | Mana...
From Programmer to
Managing Software People & Teams
© www.ronlichty.com 2
3
Untangle Knots in
Development and Product Teams
© www.ronlichty.com
• Making development “hum”
• Training teams & execs in agile
• Interim VP Eng roles
Advise Business & Engineering Leaders
4
• Discount code MANAGING:
35% off @ informit.com/managing2e
• Book and/or eBook
(eBook files include PDF, EPUB, & MOBI)
• ...
Coauthor, Study of Product Team Performance
http://www.ronlichty.com/study.html
6
You?
• A census of the “room”...
– People managers?
• Chat Storm: write in the Chat, do NOT press Return
– Name /
/ Yes or...
You?
• A census of the “room”...
– People managers?
• Poll: How much training in management you’ve had
8
Management Training
• Isn’t it odd...
– how long we expect programmers to have
studied the art of programming
– how little...
Why we wrote:
* Addison Wesley
*
10
Rules of Thumb / Nuggets of Wisdom*
* 300 in the book / more at http://managingtheunmanageable.net/morerulesofthumb.html
11
Rules of Thumb / Nuggets of Wisdom*
• Brooks’s Law: Adding manpower to a late
software project makes it later.
– Frederick...
“Manager”: Multi-Faceted Job
• Managing
• Leading
• Coaching
• Mentoring
• Listening
• Learning
• Growing
• Supporting
• E...
Agenda
• Great Managers
• Transitioning to Managing
• Motivating
• Recruiting
• Handling Problem Employees
• Shielding You...
Great Managers
15
Help Me Identify What It Takes
• Best manager you ever had?
What were the…
•Skills
•Behaviors
•Finesse
•Gifts of greatness...
Managing: Walk the Talk
• Nothing undermines your credibility as a
manager more completely than pounding on
your team all ...
Managing: Transitioning
• Rule of Thumb about climbing the ladder:
The very thing that has made you successful
will get in...
Leaders and Delegation
• Rules of Thumb
Trust but verify.
19
Empowerment
Trust but verify.
-RONALD REAGAN
20
Empowerment
Trust but verify.
-RONALD REAGAN quoting VLADIMIR LENIN
21
– imperative not to micromanage
– the essence of delegation
– setting expected outcomes for teams
Empowerment
Trust but ve...
Empowerment
Trust but verify.
-RONALD REAGAN quoting VLADIMIR LENIN
23
I inspect what I expect.
- ALAN LEFKOF, Netopia CEO...
Managing: Transitioning
• Rule of Thumb about climbing the ladder:
The very thing that has made you successful
will get in...
Managing: Transitioning
• Rule of Thumb about climbing the ladder:
The very thing that has made you successful
will get in...
Motivators vs De-Motivators
26
Frederick Herzberg’s work in the 1950s; charted in Managing the Unmanageable
Motivating:
Be Careful What You Reward
• “Behavior revolves around what you measure.”
-- Jim Highsmith
• Do you define “do...
Motivating:
Making a Difference
• Why are you working here?
• Make the connection
– the company’s mission
– the work each ...
Recruiting
29
Recruiting
• A manager’s most important job
• Always be recruiting
• There’s no perfect record
30
Handling Problem Employees
• Intervention beats performance plans & firing
– Requires preparation, commitment, time
– But ...
Agenda
• Managing a Team
• Motivating
• Recruiting
• Handling Problem Employees
• Shielding Your Team
• Managing Out and U...
Shielding Your Team
Be a damper to the noise. --Joe Kleinschmidt, CTO
John Evans, Winchester, Hants, United Kingdom, www.t...
Shielding Your Team
• Threats to your team
– Torrent of politics, “opportunities,” issues
– Sap your team’s focus
• Challe...
Managing Out and Up
• “The single most important leader in an
organization is your immediate supervisor.”
– Jim Kouzes
• “...
Managing Out & Up
• Challenging because
– your peers increasingly are not technical
– and your boss may not be either
• …t...
Productivity
The Apple Lisa team’s managers had asked
engineers to report, each week, how many lines of
code they’d writte...
Capacity
• Slack is critical to throughput
– 100% capacity results in bottlenecks
--photo (c) Bud Adams, SXC, www.aimpgh.c...
Establishing Culture
• Does your company live its values?
• Programming culture ≠ corporate culture
– Wherever you can, le...
Establishing Culture
• “Publicly reward or acknowledge engineers
who act in a way that supports the culture
that you want ...
Establishing Culture
http://www.ManagingTheUnmanageable.net 41
Communicating
• You have to communicate more
• Encourage your team to communicate
• Create a culture of communication
– at...
So Why Manage?
• You get to go broad
– Affect more of the product
– Affect more of the customer experience
• You get to be...
Raffle!
44
Ron Lichty Consulting
• Coaching, training, consulting:
– http://ronlichty.com, Ron@RonLichty.com
• The book:
Managing the...
Informit.com/lichty
Save 50% on Video Training
• Use code VIDEO50
Save 35% on Book
• Use code MANAGING
• Print or eBooks
•...
A Few Closing Rules of Thumb
• If you’re a people manager, your people are far more important than
anything else you’re wo...
Ron Lichty Consulting
• Software leadership, coaching, training, consulting:
– http://ronlichty.com, Ron@RonLichty.com
• T...
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Crash Course - Managing Software People and Teams

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"We'd like you to manage the team now." That's about as much introduction - and training - as many of us get before our first day managing. Often preceded only by, "You're a great programmer,” and maybe, “it feels like you've got some people skills.”

But while programming cred and facility with people are helpful qualifications, what do you really need to know to manage and lead well? What makes a manager great? What are the qualities that meld teams and deliver great software? What will make both your programmers and your execs rave? Those are among the questions that led Ron Lichty and his co-author Mickey W. Mantle to write "Managing the Unmanageable: Rules, Tools, and Insights for Managing Software People and Teams" (Addison-Wesley).

In this interactive session, Ron will examine the great managers each of us has experienced, and the qualities, skills, finesse and gifts of greatness that made them stand out. He'll talk about "the rest of the job": managing up, managing out, and other aspects of being a seasoned manager that reports mostly don't see.

You'll take away a few best practices of leading and managing that take most managers years to discover.

BIO: Ron Lichty

Ron Lichty has been managing and, more recently, consulting in software development and product organizations for over 30 years at companies like Apple, Fujitsu, Schwab, Razorfish, Forensic Logic, Stanford, Check Point, and dozens of startups of all sizes. Before that, as a programmer, he coded compiler code generators, was awarded patents for compression and security algorithms he designed and coded for embedded microcontroller devices, wrote two widely used programming texts, and developed the computer animation demo that Apple used to launch and sell a next-generation line of PCs.

Ron has mostly led development teams and organizations, but also product managers, project managers, testers, designers, ... pretty much everyone on product teams. The primary focus of his consulting practice, these last eight years, has mirrored what he did as a manager: untangling the knots in software development. His career grew from first level manager to VP Engineering, VP Product and CTO roles.

As Ron Lichty Consulting, he takes on fractional Interim VP Engineering roles, trains teams in scrum, transitions teams to agile, trains managers in managing software people and teams, and coaches teams to make their software development “hum.” http://www.ronlichty.com

Addison Wesley recently released the 2nd edition of his fifth book, Managing the Unmanageable: Rules, Tools, and Insights for Managing Software People and Teams (http://www.ManagingTheUnmanageable.net), compared by many readers to programming classics The Mythical Man-Month and Peopleware. He also co-authors the periodic Study of Product Team Performance (http://www.ronlichty.com/study.html).

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Crash Course - Managing Software People and Teams

  1. 1. Crash Course: Managing Software People & Teams Ron Lichty | Ron Lichty Consulting Ron@RonLichty.com | ronlichty.com | ManagingTheUnmanageable.net
  2. 2. From Programmer to Managing Software People & Teams © www.ronlichty.com 2
  3. 3. 3 Untangle Knots in Development and Product Teams © www.ronlichty.com
  4. 4. • Making development “hum” • Training teams & execs in agile • Interim VP Eng roles Advise Business & Engineering Leaders 4
  5. 5. • Discount code MANAGING: 35% off @ informit.com/managing2e • Book and/or eBook (eBook files include PDF, EPUB, & MOBI) • Free Shipping in the US Booksellers include Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and O’Reilly’s Online Learning Service. *Discount code MANAGING is only good at informit.com and cannot be used on the already discounted book + eBook bundle or combined with any other offer. 5 Managing the Unmanageable: Rules, Tools, and Insights for Managing Software People and Teams The 2nd Edition’s new chapter: If You Are Agile, What Do Managers Do?
  6. 6. Coauthor, Study of Product Team Performance http://www.ronlichty.com/study.html 6
  7. 7. You? • A census of the “room”... – People managers? • Chat Storm: write in the Chat, do NOT press Return – Name / / Yes or No (Are you / Ever been a people manager?) / / Current role • Again, do NOT press Return until I signal 7
  8. 8. You? • A census of the “room”... – People managers? • Poll: How much training in management you’ve had 8
  9. 9. Management Training • Isn’t it odd... – how long we expect programmers to have studied the art of programming – how little we expect managers to have studied the art of managing? 9
  10. 10. Why we wrote: * Addison Wesley * 10
  11. 11. Rules of Thumb / Nuggets of Wisdom* * 300 in the book / more at http://managingtheunmanageable.net/morerulesofthumb.html 11
  12. 12. Rules of Thumb / Nuggets of Wisdom* • Brooks’s Law: Adding manpower to a late software project makes it later. – Frederick P. Brooks Jr., The Mythical Man Month • Software Development is a team sport. * 300 in the book / more: http://managingtheunmanageable.net/morerulesofthumb.html 12
  13. 13. “Manager”: Multi-Faceted Job • Managing • Leading • Coaching • Mentoring • Listening • Learning • Growing • Supporting • Enabling 13 Servant Leader
  14. 14. Agenda • Great Managers • Transitioning to Managing • Motivating • Recruiting • Handling Problem Employees • Shielding Your Team • Managing Out and Up • Establishing Culture • Communicating • So Why Manage? • Q&A 14
  15. 15. Great Managers 15
  16. 16. Help Me Identify What It Takes • Best manager you ever had? What were the… •Skills •Behaviors •Finesse •Gifts of greatness . . . that made them stand out? 16
  17. 17. Managing: Walk the Talk • Nothing undermines your credibility as a manager more completely than pounding on your team all year to get their work done on time and then telling them you don’t have their reviews done because you were busy. Whatever you were busy with likely wasn’t managing your people, so you’ve just proven to them that they don’t matter. Good luck motivating them next year. – Tim Swihart, engineering director, Apple 17
  18. 18. Managing: Transitioning • Rule of Thumb about climbing the ladder: The very thing that has made you successful will get in your way in your next role. • Code -> Manage • Delegate – Delegate anyway – Delegate, not... 18
  19. 19. Leaders and Delegation • Rules of Thumb Trust but verify. 19
  20. 20. Empowerment Trust but verify. -RONALD REAGAN 20
  21. 21. Empowerment Trust but verify. -RONALD REAGAN quoting VLADIMIR LENIN 21
  22. 22. – imperative not to micromanage – the essence of delegation – setting expected outcomes for teams Empowerment Trust but verify. -RONALD REAGAN quoting VLADIMIR LENIN 22
  23. 23. Empowerment Trust but verify. -RONALD REAGAN quoting VLADIMIR LENIN 23 I inspect what I expect. - ALAN LEFKOF, Netopia CEO, quoting LOU GERSTNER Managers who use one-on-one meetings consistently find them one of the most effective and productive uses of their management time. - JOHANNA ROTHMAN and ESTHER DERBY, Behind Closed Doors
  24. 24. Managing: Transitioning • Rule of Thumb about climbing the ladder: The very thing that has made you successful will get in your way in your next role. • Manage • Delegate • See It as a New Learning Challenge 24
  25. 25. Managing: Transitioning • Rule of Thumb about climbing the ladder: The very thing that has made you successful will get in your way in your next role. • Manage • Delegate • See It as a New Learning Challenge • Be a Motivator • Don’t Be a De-Motivator 25
  26. 26. Motivators vs De-Motivators 26 Frederick Herzberg’s work in the 1950s; charted in Managing the Unmanageable
  27. 27. Motivating: Be Careful What You Reward • “Behavior revolves around what you measure.” -- Jim Highsmith • Do you define “done” as “coding complete”? – As meeting specs? – Or as features that delight customers? • “The quality of code you demand during the first week of a project is the quality of code you’ll get every week thereafter.” -- Joe Kleinschmidt, CTO • Reward heroes? – Or reward everyone pitching in, day in & day out 27
  28. 28. Motivating: Making a Difference • Why are you working here? • Make the connection – the company’s mission – the work each and every member of your team is working on 28
  29. 29. Recruiting 29
  30. 30. Recruiting • A manager’s most important job • Always be recruiting • There’s no perfect record 30
  31. 31. Handling Problem Employees • Intervention beats performance plans & firing – Requires preparation, commitment, time – But gets the job done earlier • 3 keys – Preparation – Impacts not behavior – Plan – mutually created – to fix those impacts • One of two results: – They turn their behavior around – They leave —Marty Brounstein: Handling the Difficult Employee 31
  32. 32. Agenda • Managing a Team • Motivating • Recruiting • Handling Problem Employees • Shielding Your Team • Managing Out and Up • Establishing Culture • Communicating • So Why Manage? • Q&A 32
  33. 33. Shielding Your Team Be a damper to the noise. --Joe Kleinschmidt, CTO John Evans, Winchester, Hants, United Kingdom, www.thetippingpoint.co.uk 33
  34. 34. Shielding Your Team • Threats to your team – Torrent of politics, “opportunities,” issues – Sap your team’s focus • Challenge for you – Be a conduit for Mission, Passion, Strategy – While shielding your team from distraction 34
  35. 35. Managing Out and Up • “The single most important leader in an organization is your immediate supervisor.” – Jim Kouzes • “You can safely assume all perceptions are real, at least to those who own them.” – Joe Folkman 35
  36. 36. Managing Out & Up • Challenging because – your peers increasingly are not technical – and your boss may not be either • …they’ll pressure you – to micromanage your team (or let them) – to report on / prove your team’s productivity – to fill your team’s plates to capacity 36
  37. 37. Productivity The Apple Lisa team’s managers had asked engineers to report, each week, how many lines of code they’d written. The first week, Bill Atkinson turned his attention to making QuickDraw faster and more efficient, reducing the previous week’s code by 2,000 lines. He duly reported that he’d written minus-2,000 lines of code for the week. 37
  38. 38. Capacity • Slack is critical to throughput – 100% capacity results in bottlenecks --photo (c) Bud Adams, SXC, www.aimpgh.com 38
  39. 39. Establishing Culture • Does your company live its values? • Programming culture ≠ corporate culture – Wherever you can, leverage culture & values – Wall parts off – Substitute and bolster more appropriate values 39
  40. 40. Establishing Culture • “Publicly reward or acknowledge engineers who act in a way that supports the culture that you want to create.” —Juanita Mah, engineering manager 40
  41. 41. Establishing Culture http://www.ManagingTheUnmanageable.net 41
  42. 42. Communicating • You have to communicate more • Encourage your team to communicate • Create a culture of communication – at every level – with everyone • up, down, within and across • “We have two ears and one mouth. Use them in this ratio.” — Kimberly Wiefling • In sw development, we cannot overcommunicate. 42
  43. 43. So Why Manage? • You get to go broad – Affect more of the product – Affect more of the customer experience • You get to be more in the conversation • You get to mentor and coach and motivate – A whole team – To become something more 43
  44. 44. Raffle! 44
  45. 45. Ron Lichty Consulting • Coaching, training, consulting: – http://ronlichty.com, Ron@RonLichty.com • The book: Managing the Unmanageable: Rules, Tools & Insights for Managing Software People & Teams – http://ManagingTheUnmanageable.net <-----tools, excerpts, more rules of thumb • The video training: LiveLessons: Managing Software People and Teams – http://ManagingTheUnmanageable.net/video.html • The study: The Study of Product Team Performance – http://ronlichty.com/study.html • Training: The Agile Manager Managing Software People and Teams Zero to Agile in Three Days 45
  46. 46. Informit.com/lichty Save 50% on Video Training • Use code VIDEO50 Save 35% on Book • Use code MANAGING • Print or eBooks • (eBook files include PDF, EPUB, & MOBI) Apply discount codes at informit.com 46
  47. 47. A Few Closing Rules of Thumb • If you’re a people manager, your people are far more important than anything else you’re working on. —Tim Swihart, Engineering Director • Projects should be run like marathons. You have to set a healthy pace that can win the race and expect to sprint for the finish line. —Ed Catmull, CTO, Pixar Animation Studios • In applications with high technical debt, estimating is nearly impossible. —Jim Highsmith, Agile Coach and Leader 47
  48. 48. Ron Lichty Consulting • Software leadership, coaching, training, consulting: – http://ronlichty.com, Ron@RonLichty.com • The book: Managing the Unmanageable: Rules, Tools & Insights for Managing Software People & Teams – http://ManagingTheUnmanageable.net <-----tools, excerpts, more rules of thumb • The video training: LiveLessons: Managing Software People and Teams – http://ManagingTheUnmanageable.net/video.html • The study: The Study of Product Team Performance – http://ronlichty.com/study.html • Training: The Agile Manager Managing Software People and Teams Zero to Agile in Three Days 48
  • whilpert

    May. 3, 2021

"We'd like you to manage the team now." That's about as much introduction - and training - as many of us get before our first day managing. Often preceded only by, "You're a great programmer,” and maybe, “it feels like you've got some people skills.” But while programming cred and facility with people are helpful qualifications, what do you really need to know to manage and lead well? What makes a manager great? What are the qualities that meld teams and deliver great software? What will make both your programmers and your execs rave? Those are among the questions that led Ron Lichty and his co-author Mickey W. Mantle to write "Managing the Unmanageable: Rules, Tools, and Insights for Managing Software People and Teams" (Addison-Wesley). In this interactive session, Ron will examine the great managers each of us has experienced, and the qualities, skills, finesse and gifts of greatness that made them stand out. He'll talk about "the rest of the job": managing up, managing out, and other aspects of being a seasoned manager that reports mostly don't see. You'll take away a few best practices of leading and managing that take most managers years to discover. BIO: Ron Lichty Ron Lichty has been managing and, more recently, consulting in software development and product organizations for over 30 years at companies like Apple, Fujitsu, Schwab, Razorfish, Forensic Logic, Stanford, Check Point, and dozens of startups of all sizes. Before that, as a programmer, he coded compiler code generators, was awarded patents for compression and security algorithms he designed and coded for embedded microcontroller devices, wrote two widely used programming texts, and developed the computer animation demo that Apple used to launch and sell a next-generation line of PCs. Ron has mostly led development teams and organizations, but also product managers, project managers, testers, designers, ... pretty much everyone on product teams. The primary focus of his consulting practice, these last eight years, has mirrored what he did as a manager: untangling the knots in software development. His career grew from first level manager to VP Engineering, VP Product and CTO roles. As Ron Lichty Consulting, he takes on fractional Interim VP Engineering roles, trains teams in scrum, transitions teams to agile, trains managers in managing software people and teams, and coaches teams to make their software development “hum.” http://www.ronlichty.com Addison Wesley recently released the 2nd edition of his fifth book, Managing the Unmanageable: Rules, Tools, and Insights for Managing Software People and Teams (http://www.ManagingTheUnmanageable.net), compared by many readers to programming classics The Mythical Man-Month and Peopleware. He also co-authors the periodic Study of Product Team Performance (http://www.ronlichty.com/study.html).

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