Off the Nightstand: Managing Humans   2 comments

Full title, “Managing Humans: Biting and Humorous Tales of a Software Engineering Manager” by Michael Lopp, writer of Rands in Repose.

I appear to have been bitten by a bug (a viral bug, not an insect) and have spent the last four hours in bed on vacation, during which I pounded through this quite handily.  Lopp is hilarious and engaging and spins some interesting yarns that are applicable to anyone who manages people, or anyone who has a manager, regardless of industry.

The book is mostly (or perhaps all, I didn’t check rigorously) comprised of existing blog posts, so if you’ve been a follower of Rands in Repose for a while, you’ll only be interested if you’re like me and appreciate books as works in and of themselves as entire entities… something David Weinberger, author of one of my other nightstand occupants “Everything is Miscellaneous: The Power of the New Digital Disorder” would undoubtedly find quaint.

If you are an IT worker or a manager of any stripe, Managing Humans is required reading.  I choose a quote from page 111 as my favorite section of the book:

Fact is, your world is changing faster than you’ll ever be able to keep up with, and you can view that fact from two different perspectives:

  • I believe I can control my world, and through an aggressive campaign of task management, personal goals, and a can do attitude, I will succeed in doing the impossible.  Go me!


  • I know there is no controlling the world, but I will fluidly surf the entropy by constantly changing myself.

Surfing entropy takes confidence.  This isn’t Tony Robbins confidence; this is a personal confidence you earn by constantly adapting yourself to the impossible.

Good stuff, and interesting insight from someone who has written interesting and involved dissertations on pens, notebooks, and coffee mugs.  Hang ten, everybody.


Posted July 9, 2008 by padraic2112 in books, management, software, tech

2 responses to “Off the Nightstand: Managing Humans

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  1. I love Rands in Repose. Can I borrow this when you get back?

  2. Sure.

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