This is a book on how to cope with the dizzy heights of leadership without getting vertigo or offending everyone in sight.
Computing, August 2001
Foreword by Shari Lawrence Pfleeger
THE NEW LEADER
1 I've just been made team leader of a new project. Where do I start?
2 I'm taking over the leadership of an existing project. Where do I start?
3 I am the most experienced engineer on the team. If I let others do the design and coding, they will not do it as well as I would. How can I do the important design and coding, if I am expected to write documents and plans all the time?
4 When should I review other people's work, and how?
5 When should I call a meeting and how should I chair it?
6 I have to interview a job applicant. How do I go about it?
7 How do I make a presentation?
8 How do I earn the respect of my team?
9 How do I draw up a project plan? What use is it?
10 I've been told when I must deliver my project, but the time-scale doesn't seem realistic to me. What should I do?
11 How can I stop my project from coming in late?
12 My team is working closely with another team, but the quality of their output is poor. What can I do?
13 My last project never seems to go away, I'm constantly doing fixes and changes to it. What can I do?
14 How can I get a good job done when our procedures are so bad?
15 What is meant by `teambuilding'? Is there something I'm supposed to be doing to build a better team?
16 Sometimes I think I'm being a soft touch and letting people walk all over me. Other times I think people resent me for interfering. How do I know when I'm getting the style right?
17 One of my team members is an expert in an important aspect of the project that I know little about. I feel like a fool trying to lead on this issue. What can I do?
18 I can't get my team to do any design or documentation, they just want to code. What can I do?
19 When should I let someone do a thing their own way, and when should I make them do it my way?
20 How many hours should I and my team be working?
21 I want to praise people when they do well, but it sounds so condescending. How should I reward good work?
22 I've got someone on my team who's a real problem. What should I do?
23 I think one of my people is going to leave. How can I prevent them from going?
24 One of my team is spending too much time chatting and web browsing. What should I do?
25 What is meant by `requirements capture'? How do I go about it?
26 The customer keeps asking for changes and improvements. Can I really say `no'?
STRESS AND CONFLICT MANAGEMENT
27 I'm very stressed at the moment, and so are some of my team. What can I do about it?
28 My team seems to spend too much time arguing. What can I do?
RELATIONSHIP WITH MANAGEMENT
29 I want to tackle the project in a particular way. How can I make sure that my management will let me?
30 My boss is useless. How can I put up with this?
31 I feel I'm not getting the support I need from management. What can I do about it?
32 I constantly have to make decisions on the project, often with little time for consideration. How can I be confident that I'm getting the decisions right?
33 I have to take a decision, and it involves taking a significant risk. How can I decide whether to take the risk?
ANALYSIS AND DESIGN
34 Is `analysis' really necessary, or can I go straight into design?
35 How do I decide on the best architecture and design for my project?
36 We have adopted an object-oriented approach, but everyone on the team seems to have a different idea about how best to use it. How should an object-oriented approach be used?
37 Several of my team members want to adopt a new technology on the project. Should we use the new technology or do it `the old way'?
38 The design of my project is in a mess. The architecture needs restructuring, but there's no time to do it. What should I do?
TESTING AND PROJECT RELEASE
39 Should I concentrate on unit testing or final testing of my project in order to catch the most bugs in the least time? /
40 We're about to release our product to our customer. How can I make sure it goes well?