The CTDP Management Guide Version 0.6.0 May 28, 2001

When I started this project, I had no intention of dealing with management issues. However, due to the large degree that management can influence the technical growth of an organization, it is very worthwhile to address the issue.

Over my many years as both an employee and manager I have formed and refined my management philosophies about the management of people and technologies. I have also read many books about management, motivation, productivity, managing projects, and managing people. These experiences and books have reinforced and refined my beliefs about management of personnel and management of technical people in particular. However, I believe the experiences and suggestions written in many books must sometimes be taken with a grain of salt and carefully applied to real world situations. In many cases suggestions may work, but in other cases, depending on the situation and personalities involved suggestions may not work altogether. Knowing when to apply the right ideas in management is dependent on the manager's ability to properly assess the situation and personnel involved.

Environment

Managing personnel in a production environment (such as a factory production line) is different than managing people in a research or development environment. Although there may be some similarities, such as the desire to feel like a useful successful member of a successful team, the working environment required is much different. This document concentrates mainly on working situations for technical personnel involved with research or development.

Management Subcategories

For ease of reference and use, I have broken this document into three basic sections about management, although they may be somewhat intermixed. These sections include:

  • Managing teams
  • Managing projects
  • Managing technology

Expert and Researcher Opinions

In general, management must provide teams with the proper environment and tools to efficiently perform their jobs. Management should be non beauracratic and responsive providing guidance and assistance when required. Management should expect professionalism from employees and trust the judgement of those that they have hired within reasonable limitations of personalities involved. But don't take my word for it. Read the books referenced in the appendices. These books were written by people who have a large amount of experience and are based on researcher's findings about productive organizations, and analysis of why projects fail or succeed.

Using Methodologies

When it comes to using methodologies as an aid to project management and software development, I believe they are worthwhile as long as methodologies are flexible and are used as a guide. There is a school of thought that believes that methodologies may inhibit creativity. I don't agree with this as long as the methodologies are not used to replace creative thinking. In today's complex world of software development, methodologies such as UML and extreme programming are useful for specific types of projects and can enhance productivity, discussion, planning, and creative thinking. These methodologies have the flexibility to allow creative thinking. See the appropriate areas for more information about these methodologies.