An indispensable book to someone who appreciates working in a team and contributes to its success and also being satisfied by the impact made at work.
While not being a long read, I already feel the need of getting this regular “shot” by reading again some chapters from time to time. Alexis and Michael know how to go straight to the point; to the essential and what the reader should remember.
The first part of the book goes straight to real-life situations, and spoil some concepts that later in second part are explained with great details. This book isn’t just about reading the words but also playing the exercises, learning about yourself. Depending on when in the week you’re reading it, it might even inspire you the day after and you’ll already experiment some changes.
I’ve been lucky to work with Alexis for nearly 8 years now and everything is that book is real. This isn’t theory or perfect-world situations. I’ve seen the personas in the real life, these situations in pretty much all the teams I worked with and this book is a key to “unlock” your potential to make an impact where you work and on yourself.
While targeted for Software Engineering, a lot of (if not all) concepts described in the book can be applied in nearly any job. It’s inspiring, and honestly, I wish I had this book when I started my career!
Reading this book for me was like in the old times when Alexis and I worked in the same office and I could ask him for advice. Except now I have it written and can read it infinitely. Perfect timing when you like to challenge yourself.
Emilien on Goodreads
If you’re an engineer and want to develop your career, this is a must-read. I’ve seen way too many engineers focusing on their technical expertise while what they would need to grow is their social skills. This book covers this aspect of your engineering career and what you need to understand and learn the ins and outs of being a senior engineer.
The first part covers a story where you follow different characters, which makes it super easy to read and understand the concept. It’s hard not to recognize oneself!
The second part of the book provides technics that you can apply right away to your daily job and influence the way you work, getting better outcomes of the time you invest in your routines.
This is an excellent publication if you are ready to rewire your brain to take charge of your development rather than enduring your work.
Julien on Goodreads
Wow! For such a short book, I found it very useful. It mixes aspects of Stoicism and mindfulness with productivity, communication, and team development topics. The exercises, all detailed in part 2, look like they will be very useful in helping me adopt a positive mindset and be more productive and impactful at work. In general, I enjoy “business fable” books, but this is the first one I have read that adopted the practice of “one lesson per chapter”, starting with an explanation of how it is important, and ending with advice on how to develop that skill yourself. I read this cover to cover in one sitting.
Dave on Goodreads
This book is a straightforward, thorough, and insightful door to leadership, personal growth, and constant self-evaluation.
As someone that spends a lot of tine reflecting and trying to understand other people’s perspectives, I appreciated the emphasis and information this books puts on the argument.
I recommend this book to engineers and managers of every level. If nothing else, I’m sure refreshing existing knowns won’t hurt at all.
I liked the structure of the book as well as the numerous references to other sources where the reader can go to read more about a specific technique and/or topic.
Well done, Alexis and Michael.
Flavio on Goodreads
This book is great if you are progressing in your career as a software developer. I wish I had all this information at hand when I was starting as a lead engineer. The book is well structured with stories you will definitely recognise. It provides practical tools (as experiments) to try out yourself. A great and quick read for all those engineers wanting to get in charge.Bart Haak on Goodreads
Cuts-though with great clarity to deliver potent learnings via mini-stories
Being an avid reader, I go through lots of books. While most books meander through lots of content to deliver a single message. This lean book, on the other hand, conveys new learnings with every chapter! The format is simply brilliant! The closest thing, I can compare it to is Aesop’s Fables in an enterprise setting. It allows us to relate to the emotion the main character feels and driving home the point using dripping empathy rather than dry preaching. Each chapter is followed by simple experiments that can be tried out and woven into our professional lives
The book chronicles through everyday challenges, provocations, passive-aggressive behaviors that the main character Sandrine faces, within and outside her team, just like we all do in a typical organization. The surprising and brilliant element of this book is how Sandrine manages to look at her own demeanor and reactions in these situations. With the help of mentors and wise colleagues, she manages to acknowledge and understand her own shortcomings. She goes on to alter her attitude and mindset, which helps in successfully navigating through these issues faced and in the process influence and motivate her team members.
“Maybe this isn’t the job for me. Maybe I should be in a different company. I just wish everyone around me would do more, be better somehow.” a thought Sandrine echoes at the beginning of the book, is a common one that resonates with a lot of us when we are frustrated with people that we work with. Every week brings on new disappointments, exposes more incompetencies in people, uncover large gaps in strategy and execution. How much of this is real and how much perceived? How much personal power and influence we have to make a positive impact? While we crave for people around us to improve, are we taking the time to step back and look at our own contributions or lack thereof?
Written in a really straightforward manner this book walks us through how Sandrine slowly opens up to feedback, reflects on her reactions and way of working, makes simple changes in her perspective, and attitude which ultimately delivers her from frustration to renewed enthusiasm. The simple examples and explanations illustrated in this book make it easy to follow and understand. I’ve found the book motivational, inspiring, actionable, and a positive read.Ranjith Varakantam on Goodreads
(and leave yours when you are done reading the book 🙂 )