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I'm just over an hour and a half in and am massively disappointed by this book so far; so much so that I've been motivated to write a review before I get my credit refunded.
I'm a software engineer and was hoping to learn some useful and "official" scrum knowledge. So far, actual useful scrum related content must be only around a minute's worth, with the remainder being bragging ("I flew military planes", "do martial arts", "saved the FBI with IT", "my son is a war correspondent" kind of thing). This is unforgivable for a book who's title makes claims about doing twice the work in half the time.
If you've worked in software development for any length of time, you've likely come across the blaggers - people who are really good at talking, but very poor at doing. They point out problems at length, trying to make out like they are intelligent. Some fools fall for this, but any idiot can point out faults. It takes someone with intelligence to come up with solutions. After an hour and a half, all I've heard has been very light on useful information, but chock full of pointless anecdote after anecdote. At let's not forget the narcism - must be tough when you're so starved of praise that you have to write a book telling the whole world how great you are.
When some "facts" are introduced, they are very dubious. Take, for instance, the discussion about variation in developer productivity, which can apparently vary by up to as much as a factor of 10 for someone to produce a similar deliverable. Contrary to this, my own experience of development and others' work is that people who produce solutions faster do so at the cost of quality (I'm trying to remember where I've read things to back this up, perhaps it was in the excellent Code Complete by Steve McConnell). Then the author goes on to say that other studies have found that variation in team productivity can be much greater than a factor of 10, making the claim that something that took one team 1 week to do took some teams up to 2000 weeks to do. Wow, great statistic to quote to your boss, right? Better sort out our team, yes? Except for, if you think about it, that's over 38 years it took this other team to complete a task that one team could do in a week. This team must have been made up of very persistent people with severe learning difficulties. And I'd also like to know which team actually kept on with the same task for over 38 years. The problem is that this will now become a "fact" because it's been published in a book and people will listen to it and absorb it without question.
Another thing that was mentioned was how great it was to tear down cubicles to make way for an open plan office. This is stupid - study after study has shown that people with their own office, especially developers, are more productive. The reason is obvious and simple: software development is a thinking discipline and when you're in a noisy office with people interrupting you with questions whenever they feel like it doesn't help. You should convert the cubicles to real offices, not tear them down!
I'm going to finish this review by saying that the author is a fool. Even if this book is amazing from chapter 5 onwards, I've had enough of my time wasted by a narcissist who I never, ever want the misfortune of working with that I won't bother continuing. How this book has gotten so many good reviews, I'll never know.
7 of 8 people found this review helpful
I read an inflamatory review of this book telling that it is too self indulging. At times it feels like the scrum will solve world hunger, find a cure for all diseases and make every human clever. But in general this book is full of examples why scrum works and why when done properly it will make your job more enjoyable. JJ Sutherland narrating is great and the supporting stories very engaging.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
very well written book for the adoption of scrum. great book for all !! nice
I was looking forward to this after hearing about the system. I was hoping for nitty gritty on how to work the system, selecting a team, difficulties you may face.
Instead almost the entire book was like some sort of spin sell about how amazing the system is, intermingled with pompous cheesy quotes. the but I wanted was at the very end like an afterthought.
such a shame, this book could have been all much better. I'd save your money and just go on YouTube.