Merlin’s weekly podcast with Dan Benjamin. We talk about creativity, independence, and making things you love.
Review: Scott Berkun's 'The Art of Project Management'
Merlin Mann | May 23 2005
The Art of Project Management
by Scott Berkun
O’Reilly recently sent me a review copy of Scott Berkun’s The Art of Project Management. I’ve read a couple chapters through, and—as the author himself has recommended—have grazed through a bunch of the sections that looked especially interesting to me. See, I have a marker for a non-fiction book that’s really connecting with me—as I’m reading it, I find myself repeatedly cursing the fact that it didn’t exist earlier. I’m definitely feeling that with this one.
Where so many Project Management books fetishize GANTT charts, waterfalls, and abstract planning methods, most of Berkun’s book lives much further down in the trenches—where misunderstandings happen, dates slip, and bad decisions threaten to derail your project. The book is full of really practical advice on handling these challenges in the real world. And, yes, I really wish it had existed 7 or 8 years ago. As it is, many of my bouncer skills were primitively self-taught.
One of my favorite chapters, as you might guess, is called “How Not to Annoy People: Process, Email, and Meetings.” It includes a useful bit on how to write good email that I wish everyone who owned a computer would consider reading and then stapling to their monitor.
There’s a PDF of a sample chapter (Chapter 3: How to figure out what to do) on the O’Reilly book site to give you a flavor. But if your job includes any kind of project management especially in the world of web development, you might want to have a look at this. The skills Berkun encourages go beyond one team member’s role, though—communicating well, meeting deadlines, and moving your piece of the project forward are the skills that make anyone the team’s MVP.
|EXPLORE 43Folders||THE GOOD STUFF|