Thursday 19 January 2017

The Phoenix Project - Gene Kim, Kevin Behr, George Spafford - A Novel About IT, DevOps, and Helping Your Buisness Win

The Phoenix Project:
A Novel About IT, DevOps, and Helping Your Buisness Win
Gene Kim, Kevin Behr and George Spafford
IT Revolution Press
ISBN 9780988262591
eISBN 9780988262577

This was one of the books on the It bookshelf at work. And there was a whole stack of them. This book was really a big surprise to me. For once I started it I could hardly put it down. The writers take some topics that can be pretty dry at the best of times and absolutely arid at the worst and make them not only palatable but incredibly enjoyable. The book teaches the Agile Methodology and the ITIL Principle’s in a very engaging way.

In some ways this book reads like a self-help book for IT leadership, and IT departments as a whole. It is an easy read, and reminiscent of Robin Sharma, Dan Millman and like Patrick Lencioni it is told as a story or a parable if you will. But unlike Lencioni it is all story; where his books are a parable story and then a breakdown unpacking of it. That functionality is woven into the book through the potential board member, and his sage like advice and guidance to our protagonist.  This book is an easy read, in fact many reviewers talk about not being able to put the book down.

I have worked corporately in IT for about a dozen years now, and have as many years prior to that working mostly with non-for-profits. I truly believe that almost every IT department, team, or worker could benefit from reading this book. I know a few people in the industry that I have worked with that already incorporate these ideas. I know many others who want to but have yet to get them implemented. And I know some that just don’t get it and they most of all need to read this book.

The book follows a car parts company, Parts Unlimited, company as it teeters on the brink. Some bad choices have caused upheaval. A guy known for getting it done gets promoted, but within hours Bill realized that his corner of IT may have run well but overall there are major issues. He soon finds out that he has 90 days to turn around the company and make the Phoenix Project a success or the company might be sold and split up in parts. A number of the main players are people you will recognise, either current coworkers or former coworkers. But you will also learn many skills that you can take from the book and start applying to your tasks, and if you are lucky up through your organization.

This book really is a page turner, and for a book about IT, DevOps, and infrastructure management that really says something about the quality of the writing. And As I said anyone in an IT role would benefit from the reading! A great resource.

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