The Zombie Workplace Survival Guide – a Software Developer’s Perspective

Here are my three own three P’s that I have used in the past and that may help you as a developer in a large company avoid zombification:

  • Prototype your idea. If you lack the skills to do so then you are very possibly in the wrong business. You don’t want to put yourself at the mercy of unpredictable forces and personalities that will mean the death or deadly dilution of the idea before it is born.
  • Prove that your software has merit. Get a small but influential group of people additctied to using it before seeking any official ‘buy-in’. Generate hard data. Wow the bean counters. Save money. Create data porn that no eyes can turn away from.
  • Plunder from existing frameworks and components. Resist the temptation to rebuild that which already exists in the world (even if you can do it ‘better’, more scalable etc) as this fact will not champion the project early on. Get it working first, optimize it later.

See: The Zombie Workplace Survival Guide – H. James Wilson and Kevin Desouza – Research – Harvard Business Review.

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