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Showing posts from October, 2014

The Importance of the Invisibles (Book Review)

When I read Tom DeMarco’s classic I book Peopleware some time ago, one small part of the book stuck with me. He briefly discusses the idea that some people on teams are Catalysts, people who seem to help a team but who didn’t stand out. As an example, DeMarco describes one person:
“ During her twelve years at the company, the woman in question had never worked on a project that had been anything other than a huge success. It wasn’t obvious what she was adding, but projects always succeeded when she was around.” This brief acknowledgement of the contribution of someone who wasn’t a star can make to a team stuck with me as something that made sense, but which I never thought about before. David Zweig’s book Invisibles: The Power of Anonymous Work in an Age of Relentless Self-Promotion is an entire book that describes the role of people like this, and thus made a big impression as well. It’s not that some of the people Zweig describes are not incredibly talented and skilled; they are.…