Web Development Tips: 10 step plan for working with software engineers

Product / Project Managers

Web Development Tips 10 step plan for working with software engineers

Working with web developers

Ken Norton has crafted a fine tuned guide for coping with the ways of web developers (software engineers) but has finally succumbed to the need to share his experience, and demonstrate a wonderful sense of comic irony.

1. Absorb praise

2. Deflect blame

Remember: there is no “we” in me


3. Don’t bother with the details

4. Involve them late

5. Add process

Process leads to productivity


6. Never tell the reasons

7. Commit for them

8. Interrupt at any time

Nothing is more important than whatever you need right now


9. Be ambiguous

10. They’re always lying

Read the full 10 steps on Ken Norton’s website

Most important!

Read the Afterword!

When Norton isn’t being the best Product Manager in history alongside Steve Jobs and Niccolò Machiavelli he is a group product manager at Google. He joined Google in 2006 with the acquisition of JotSpot, where he was vice president of products. He has a BA from Boston University and an MS from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He is a dad to two boys and really likes to ride his bike.




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David J Rodger – DATA



6 thoughts on “Web Development Tips: 10 step plan for working with software engineers

  1. The Web Dev company I worked for before quitting there and going freelance believed all of the above to be true and even added more extreme versions – such as wanting to know to the minute how long you spent working on each of the seven simultaneous projects you were receiving emails, phone calls and shoulder taps about… utterly insane place to work with systemic neuroses…
    I would write a book about it, but no one would ever believe it…

    • Ewww, sounds nasty and a good reason to get the heck out. I adopt the principles described in the afterword. Inclusion, communication and honesty. But maybe you SHOULD write a book about it. Or a mini pilot for a series. Ever watch the British version of the IT Crowd?

      • I really dont think it would sell- its too dark and unbelievable. To give a not too extreme example after I returned to work following my wife’s miscarriage my manager accused me of “not being productive enough to warrant the time off” – I suppose there may be some dark humour to it… love IT crowd, but I honestly believe though real it just would not believed.

      • Nah she got made redundant just after I left. But they are still trading, and even have landed more government and military contracts. The other reason I probably couldn’t write a book about it is hopefully implied.

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