Accelerate : My Review

There was a Teams discussion at work and this book was mentioned, so I thought I would give it a go. I must admit I was a little nervous about it because I really didn’t like The Unicorn Project (see here) and it kind-of put me off reading anything else with Gene Kim’s name associated with it.

The Good

There are two forwards. The first by Martin Fowler and the second by Courtney Kissler. By the time I finished reading the forward by Courtney Kissler I felt really hyped up and I couldn’t wait to get into it. Reading it back now I’m not sure why it resonated with me so much, but it did…

The book is split into two main parts. The first part discusses the conclusions from the research. I think there are endless quotable moments here. I started to write some down, thinking I could incorporate some into this post, but there were too many, so I decided not to. 🙂 If you’ve read other books on DevOps and Lean, there won’t be a lot that is new to you, but these conclusions are evidence-based, rather than just speculation and rose coloured spectacles views of projects gone by. One of the things that irritates me with some books is I wonder how much is real, and how much is rewriting history to fit the narrative. Evidence based feels more real.

The second part of the book was more focused on the evidence that was gathered that lead to the conclusions. That sounds like it could be a little dry, but I think it worked quite well.

The Bad and the Ugly

I don’t have anything really negative to say about the book. The bad and the ugly is more down to the way I felt as the book came to a conclusion. When I’m reading these books I get a bit lost in them, and feel like I can make a difference. I’m all enthusiastic, but when they are over I come crashing down to earth. Discussions of culture change driven from the top, with senior management developing a culture of learning, leave me desolate. Discussions of the teams and people needed for success make me wonder if we have the raw materials to do this. It just seems insurmountable…

There was one section that mentioned working with 3rd party apps, and I was really interested to see what they said, but it was rather vague and disappointing, which I could have predicted. That was probably my only real gripe, but the book was unapologetically focused on software development, so I can’t really hold this point against it. 🙂

Conclusion

If you are into the whole DevOps, Lean and organisational transformation stuff I think it’s worth taking a look. You aren’t necessarily going to walk away with new insights, but you might get a better understanding of how you can quantify a transformation you are taking part in. It’s also nice to be reminded of stuff you’ve read before…

Some other things you might want to check out.

Cheers

Tim…

Author: Tim...

DBA, Developer, Author, Trainer.

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