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REVIEW: "97 Things Every Project Manager Should Know", Barbee Davis

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  • Rob, grandpa of Ryan, Trevor, Devon & Han
    BK97PMSK.RVW 20100606 97 Things Every Project Manager Should Know , Barbee Davis, 2009, 978-0-596-80416-9, U$29.99/C$37.99 %E Barbee Davis %C 103 Morris
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 17 12:06 PM
      BK97PMSK.RVW 20100606

      "97 Things Every Project Manager Should Know", Barbee Davis, 2009,
      978-0-596-80416-9, U$29.99/C$37.99
      %E Barbee Davis
      %C 103 Morris Street, Suite A, Sebastopol, CA 95472
      %D 2009
      %G 978-0-596-80416-9
      %I O'Reilly & Associates, Inc.
      %O U$29.99/C$37.99 800-998-9938 fax: 707-829-0104 nuts@...
      %O http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/ /robsladesinterne
      http://www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/ASIN/ /robsladesinte-21
      %O http://www.amazon.ca/exec/obidos/ASIN/ /robsladesin03-20
      %O Audience i- Tech 1 Writing 1 (see revfaq.htm for explanation)
      %P 223 p.
      %T "97 Things Every Project Manager Should Know"

      The preface simply states that this book is about project management,
      possibly specializing in new products or processes. Reading the table
      of contents, and particularly the listing by topic (starting with
      "Agile Methods"), you realize that the work emphasizes management of
      software development projects.

      There are 97 tips or points in the text, each piece being no more than
      two pages long, so that they can be displayed on a facing set of
      pages. Given the number of authors, it is no surprise that the same
      topics may be covered in different pieces. For example, at least nine
      separate items, spread throughout the book, note the importance of
      properly specifying requirements. Sometimes the authors seem to be
      trying to create jargon just to hide this fact: one of the
      requirements articles was entitled "Avoid Whack-a-Mole Development"
      while another talks about "scrolling through time." In other
      instances it is difficult to say what the point of the piece is,
      regardless of title. Some authors contributed more than one item, but
      most provided only a single short article.

      This work is not a guide to management. Because of the variety of
      authors, in addition to duplication of subjects, some of the
      viewpoints conflict. More than a few articles stress the importance
      of structure, "cleanroom" methods, and designing it right in the first
      place: one author has provided four papers that all basically tell you
      not to worry too much about quality.

      The title is probably more apt than one might think. Most of the
      material in this guide is stuff that project managers should already
      know: the aforementioned importance of requirements, having a proper
      grasp of the whole project, complexity creates problems, the project
      should benefit the company, tools should benefit projects,
      communicate, structure is good, etc. Some points are rather novel:
      one on "technical debt" was particularly interesting. Others may be
      important, but in limited circumstances or environments: one item
      heavily stresses the significance of proper translations when dealing
      with an internationalized product.

      As a guide or reference to management this text is probably
      unsuitable, but as a reminder of different aspects managers may wish
      to consider in their ongoing work, this book provides quick chunks,
      and can be picked up and set down without requiring a commitment of
      time or attention. Probably a good idea for managers.

      copyright Robert M. Slade, 2010 BK97PMSK.RVW 20100606

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