J.D. Meier's Blog

Software Engineering, Project Management, and Effectiveness

Lessons Learned in patterns and practices

Lessons Learned in patterns and practices

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I'm a fan of continuous learning.  My post Lessons Learned in patterns & practices on Shaping Software summarizes some of my best lessons.  It's from the school of hard knocks.  I've been lucky enough to have some great mentors that have really helped me unleash my best.  I've also been lucky enough to work on a variety of challenging projects that have grown my experience and capabilities beyond what I ever expected.  The post is my attempt to both remind myself of the key lessons and to share those lessons with you.  Absorb what is useful.

Top Ten Lessons
Here's a list of the top 10 lessons:

  • Win the heart, the mind follows.
  • Know the tests for success.
  • Fix time, flex scope.
  • Use the system to educate.
  • Work with the right people, on the right problems, making the right impact.
  • Have the right people in the room asking the right questions.
  • Sell the vision.
  • Make it a project.
  • Know what you're optimizing.
  • Turn chickens into pigs.

One of the ways I've learned to carry lessons forward is to turn them into terse little guidelines.  It makes them sticky and easier to recall.  I also find that some of my best mentors tend to have a way with words and they share their advice as pithy sayings.

For more lessons and elaboration check out my post, Lessons Learned in patterns and practices.