Home » Author Archives: Allan Kelly

Author Archives: Allan Kelly

Allan Kelly
Allan Kelly has held just about every job in IT, these days he provides training and consulting in development management, processes & products, especially around Agile. He specializes in working with software product companies, aligning company strategy with products and processes. More about Allan at http://www.softwarestrategy.co.uk/allankelly

Software development is upside down

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In the software development world a number of common management maxims need to be reversed if one is to be an effective manager. Those who manage software development – and I include all the non-commissioned managers in this, Architects, Team Leads, Scrum Masters etc. – need to turn their thinking upside down. Here are a few I spot all the ...

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Surge or pivot? – notes on failure

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Failure is good. We learn from failure. Failure is learning; the information content of a failure may be more than the information content of success. Failure isn’t failure, it’s an opportunity to pivot. Failure is capitalism’s Darwinian evolutionary mechanism to remove the less productive, the less relevant. Fail fast, fail cheap, learn, try again. Creative Destruction is the way capitalism remove legacy companies ...

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Using cost of delay to determine schedule

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“When does the business need it?” is far more important than “When will the developers have it ready?”. Business needs should drive schedules, engineers need to create solutions which fit within business schedules. That does not mean cutting corners, it does not mean shipping with bugs or technical debt. Its the art of the possible and its what engineers have ...

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Servants, not leaders, not managers

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Sharp eyed readers of my management mini-series will have noticed I referred to managers doing administration several times, Peter Hilton mailed me to ask me more about this. Let me image such a manager, let me imagine the worst possible scenario… This manager spends a lot of time involved in admin. Finance forms a lot of this, juggling a budget, ...

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NoProjects applies to bread machines too

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#NoProjects continues to attract an increasing amount of attention. In fact the idea now has its own NoProjects website – many thanks to Evan Leybourn [[check]] for that. From time to time I get asked: “Surely #NoProjects doesn’t apply to embedded software? After all, the software is installed, the device ships, end of story.” Maybe, but as in other cases ...

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Some things can never be spoken

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“Some things can never be spoken Some things cannot be pronounced That word does not exist in any language It will never be uttered by a human mouth” Talking Heads, Give me back my name, Little Creates 1985 Some things shouldn’t be spoken. Some things shouldn’t be targeted, some things should be created as a side effect. In Life, the ...

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Management – what are we left with?

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Over the last four month I have written a dozen blogs concerning management of software development. I will write more, but I’d also like to draw a line under this mini-series write now – there are other things I want to blog about. Management in and of software development is an important topic, simply abolishing it is simplistic. Although as ...

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Advice for managing software development?

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When I started writing my management blog series one reader expressed their hope that I would give advice on how to manage software development. I’m sorry, but this series has contained very little advice on how to manage software development. There is a good reason for that: It is hard to give specific advice to managers. You can’t say “If ...

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Management for the masses?

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This is an important post. This is the ninth blog post in my mini-series on management, it is the blog post all the others have been building up to, let me recap some key points: When creating software there there is coding work, testing work, requirements work and some unavoidable management work Removing managers may remove some work (because managers ...

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Managing requires skills and intuition

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If you’ve been reading my series of blogs on management it should be clear by now that I think some element of management is essential in software development. You might also have picked up that management, in various forms, is bigger than is commonly realised. I also believe that good management can make a big difference to software development teams, ...

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