o one of our senior executives (who I trust does not bother with this little blog) told everyone at work they had to read three specific books on software principles and practices.
And thus Caesar sent forth his decree.
Really, how many people (other than the guppy-swallowing career-jumpers) are going to bother? We work in an environment of churn, where we see management say one thing and do another, where our development jobs have shipped overseas (the shortcomings of this lost on those Olympians who never do code reviews on these guys), and where every sprint has some emergency that crushes our planning and makes us fail again. Look, just being honest.
So on all this, with the entire development force churning towards mutiny and the entire direct management staff turned to face Rome and its commands, is it any wonder that this order was not (largely) followed?
Of course we have the “quoters”, those who will bring up salient points from the books (and dropping the fact that they, at least in some small part, scanned the pages). It’s the exact same thing as those people who send out a wide-distribution email at midnight to make sure everyone knows they were at their desk at midnight. I’ve done that trick before, too. Didn’t help.
But the best moment of this whole silly show was with one of our developers. I was listening in while a “quoter” spouted pocket points from the books. And realizing he wasn’t getting traction, he asked, “Didn’t you read them?”
“I look at this as ‘Just in time reading’.”
A perfect response against those who weaponize books.