“How many of you have been on a team in a state of shared vision?” This is the question Jim McCarthy used to kick off last night’s Agile Boston presentation. “Now, stay standing if you thought that team was at least 2x as effective as a team without one… 5x more effective… 10x more effective.” […]
A Hacker Chick Guest post by Trudy Prins, a wonderfully passionate software development manager at RIPE NCC in The Netherlands. I asked if she might share what she believes makes a successful software team. I hope you enjoy her answer and this glimpse into how she leads her teams as much as I do… As […]
Goodness on the Internets: An Open Letter to Micromanagers by Scott Berkun. “Owners of thoroughbreds never stop their horses during a race, every ten seconds, to remind the horse and jockey how to run, where the finish line is, or that it’d be a good idea to finish first. Why? It would slow them down. […]
A lot of people say you can’t be a good software manager without really understanding software development. But, let’s face it, people who understand software development are a dime a dozen in our industry. What we really need are people who understand leadership & management. I mean… you know the drill – when was the […]
Want to know if your team is effective? Listen to them. We can learn a lot about team effectiveness through research that’s been done on teams whose work can mean the difference between life and death. Namely, operating room teams and airline cockpit crews. The airline industry, which gets such a bad rap, actually has […]
Last Tuesday, Andrew Stellman and Jenny Greene came to the Boston SPIN to talk about Beautiful Teams, the topic of a wonderful book they’ve just published. A book I believe Scott Berkun captured best when he said, "Stop complaining about your coworkers. Instead, get your team and your boss to read Beautiful Teams." And of […]
Ken Schwaber, co-developer of Scrum, just gave an interesting talk at the Agile Project Leaders Network. Scrum, he explained, is not a methodology, but a framework for developing complex products. The thing about complexity is that the more of it we have, the less likely it is that an external entity can dictate our way […]
I went to see Johanna Rothman speak last week at the Software Quality Group of New England. I like Johanna because, as an expert in management, she can spot a line of management B.S. from a mile away. I don’t have this skill. As a coder, my special power is spotting crappy code. If another […]
A lot of managers don’t think twice about every day things that slow down developers… • Slow or unstable development machines • Delays from business folks in clarifying requirements • Little to no feedback on the product until it’s already “done” • Loss of focus from repeated interruptions And yet, these same managers will often […]
Because, apparently, their 30 minute debate on TDD was insufficient, Agile Bazaar invited industry leaders Bob Martin & Jim Coplien to continue the discussion over an entire weekend of old sk00l learning at MIT. And so, as 90 of us gathered to hear them out, they kicked it off by explaining why agile is so […]
Agile has a notion of defining “done.” This might sound funny – how could we not know when something is done? But, as with any creative endeavor – there is “done” and then there’s Done. Just try it – ask 5 different people on your project how they determine when a development task is “done” […]
Here’s a pop quiz for you. When trying to improve myself, I focus on: a) Advancing my strengths b) Overcoming my weaknesses If you are like most people, you’d have answered B. And you’d be wrong. In case the ever growing self-help sections of our bookstores didn’t give it away, we live in a society […]
I just got back from a presentation by Robin Goldsmith on How Managers Get So Stupid held by the Software Quality Group of New England, which I thought made a rather interesting point about… well, the rest of us. Imagine the boss walks up to you and says, "I want you to build me a […]
Waiting for the Internets
Abby Fichtner is The Hacker Chick. She helps people build amazing technology and push the edge on what's possible.
She's taught classes for MIT and Harvard on innovation and entrepreneurship, worked with hundreds of entrepreneurs, and been named an Innovation Amplifier by the Boston Globe, one of the Top 25 Women in Boston Tech, and Boston's Startup Gaurdian Angel.
After 3 years at Harvard Innovation Lab, Abby now helps individuals to create their own products and businesses so they can bring in additional money, become their own boss, gain financial freedom, and do work they feel proud of.