I saw his last night its now on slashdot and search engine land.
Google Vs MS
Looks like Google isnt as good in some ways (there management structure sucks big time) as MS maybe G need to Hire Steve Mcconnell
>> there management structure sucks big time
Interesting perspective... I had exactly the opposite reaction. If you have the right developers, with a clear sense of direction and good motivation, why would you need a layer of management to tell them what to do, and measure their "performance"? If the product works, they've done well. Anything else is secondary, surely.
From an experienced developer’s pov I worked on some of the research into iso9000 and how it applied to sw when I was a lot younger and I’ve worked on balls out RAD projects since. I am speaking to what s wrong with the company not that you couldn’t have fun there.
1 they have serious span of control issues
2 also from my reading of this its unclear a lot of the time exactly who your working for which is a recipe for disaster
3 flat hierarchies are a problem going forward wheres the career path this isn’t a startup anymore Msoft and companies like BT have this problem as well.
4 lack of private space to work I’m with MS on this one you want developers head down in the zone not chatting and being distracted.
5 to much recruiting people like L & S
Go and read Rapid Software Development by Mconnell - its the best book evvah on softare development.
Well Bang goes my chance of working there :-)
...but I wonder, which company has produced more millionaires from their ranks? ;)
PS: I hear Google is actually a pretty fun place to work. Friend of mine has an invitation to work there and said the only reason he's not taken up the offer is he loves it where he lives and doesn't want to relocate...that and he likes the lure of pre IPOs.
mjwalshe, I see where you're coming from. I think there's a philosophical divide here though, and I think we are on opposite sides of it. The lack of structure etc points, I see what you mean, but in an enviroment where everybody already feels a common sense of purpose, motivation and drive, too much structure is actually a hindrance.
Layers of management provide external motivation and targets for those who can't manage to generate them internally, and also exclude the possibility for those who can. It's the difference between a conscript, and an elite SPecial Forces soldier.
The conscript needs constant supervision and leadership at the tactical and strategic level, telling him where to go, what to do and what his mission is and how to acomplish it. The elite soldier will continue to be effective even in the most difficult circumstances, even being able to improvise entirely new missions for themselves without requiring detailed direction from above if necessary.
Google operates an "Special Forces" model. Of course, there are dangers - the model assumes a LOT of things on behalf of the employees, and if those things stop being true, the model breaks, and so does the company
>> 4 lack of private space to work I’m with MS on this one you want developers head down in the zone not chatting and being distracted.
I've got a more fundamental disagreement with that. There's a tendency in many corporate structures to assume that work = productivity, which I and Scott Adams know to be a fallacy. Whilst there is clearly a strong correlation between time spent coding and worthwhile product out the other end, I DON'T believe it's a strictly linear relationship.
A bit of "chatting" can provide benefits, such as improved stress levels, improved employee morale and the exchange of ideas and best practice technique, leading to improve productivity. A company full of zombies who serve their time, don't talk to each other and don't step outside of the management proscribed boxes will never produce anything remarkable.
A company of developers who spend their whole day shirking won't either - but thats what Google seek to avoid with everything else they provide. They seek to induce a culture where the developers have freedom, and seek to use that freedom
>> wheres the career path
Why does there have to be a "career path"? Does every programmer necessarily aspire to promotion away from a keyboard? If you are consistently paid a salary commensurate with your contribution to the company, does there have to be a titular advancement as well?
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