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The Phoenix Project: A Novel about IT, DevOps, and Helping Your Business Win Hardcover – 10 Jan 2013

4.7 out of 5 stars 283 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 343 pages
  • Publisher: It Revolution Press (10 Jan. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0988262592
  • ISBN-13: 978-0988262591
  • Product Dimensions: 23.8 x 16.1 x 2.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (283 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 441,337 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

About the Author

Gene Kim is a multiple award winning CTO, researcher and author. He was founder and CTO of Tripwire for 13 years and has worked with some of the top Internet companies on improving deployment flow and increasing the rigor around IT operational processes. In 2007, ComputerWorld added Gene to the "40 Innovative IT People Under The Age Of 40" list, and was given the Outstanding Alumnus Award by the Department of Computer Sciences at Purdue University. Kevin Behr is the founder of the Information Technology Process Institute (ITPI) and the Chief Strategist for the CIO and Board Advisory Practice at Assemblage Pointe, where Kevin has built a unique consulting practice that mentors and coaches IT organizations to increase their business effectiveness and competitive advantage now and over the long term through the application of improvement sciences. George Spafford is a Research Director for Gartner covering process improvement in IT operations that leverage best practice references. He is a prolific author and speaker, and has consulted and conducted training on strategy, IT management, information security and overall service improvement in the U.S., Canada, Australia, New Zealand and China. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is the best book I've read on applying lean manufacturing processes to IT operations work. What makes is so great is that it is an expertly written, compelling story which leads you on a journey, rather than preaching dry theory.

Anyone with experience in IT will be utterly absorbed by the characters and situations in the story. On more than one occasion I felt like I was actually re-living past experiences, as the authors capture the relationships, motivations and consequences so accurately. With a background of failing IT established (which is made so real by shared experiences), the book slowly leads you through the main characters decision making process, showing you all the successes and failures he makes on the way to truly understanding how to manage the flow of work through his IT operations department.

Again, this book is brilliant, and should be a must-read for anyone either in IT, or in an origination supported by it.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
If you work in IT (heck, even if your business has any IT - so that's all of you), then you should read this book.

Regardless of your specific role, I'm certain that you'll learn something useful (and more importantly, actionable). I've changed my approach to doing a few things already based on lessons I've taken from the book and I still need to process some more ideas around how to do stuff better. I expect that I'll be reading it at least one more time through so that I don't miss anything that I could make use of.

One month ago, I'd never heard about this book. Of all the interesting and useful things that I took away from the Microsoft Global MVP Summit this November, I suspect that this will have the greatest impact. Fellow PowerShell MVP Steven Murawski often talks about DevOps and recommends this book in his presentations. He's such a fan of the book that he brought a bunch of copies to give out and I was very glad to receive one after hearing him extol its virtues.

Having read the first few chapters on the flight back from Seattle, on landing I purchased the Kindle edition from Amazon UK so that I could carry it around on my Kindle and phone in order to reduce the barriers to being able to consume it!

Personally, I love the approach that this book takes. By encompassing so much useful information about ITSM, DevOps methodologies and much more in a novel with an engaging storyline, I was able to read it much more easily and quickly that many of the dry technical texts that bog down our industry. I think that it also helped me to digest the information and apply it to my work situation more easily, even though I work in a significantly different type of organisation to that in the story.

The bottom line is that this isn't just a good book, it's an important book. You should read it at the first available opportunity. We'll all be the better for it.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The Pheonix Project is an IT Management Fable, the characters are for the most part extreme representations of concepts and people you interact with in business. The scenarios though are all too realistic, failing companies due to poor ability to respond to the voice of the customer, overrunning major projects with no end in sight, heroics all around, a failure to understand the voice of the business with security demands, audit requirements and processes that add hours, days and months to lead times, despair and frustration from all quarters and open hostility not just between IT and the rest of the business but an IT civil war too. Yes Bill is almost magical at seeing the problems, Steve changes from antagonist to mentor too easily, I've never seen a change manager as willing to adapt as Patty, so on and so forth, but a story bogged down in meetings wouldn't be of much interest. Oh and Eric. You'll never work with Eric, if you do, follow him everywhere.

With these realistic problems that no doubt face most of us the Pheonix Project lays out a number of tools and approaches that will lead the reader to think "damn, that's a good idea" or "that's an amazing way of looking at it". There's a moment in the book (I got it on kindle first, but now I have a physical copy that's getting the highlighter treatment) where one of the executives more or less goes "well dur well done you've figured it out" to which another goes, "well why didn't you think to explain this to everyone?" we often assume that the obvious is obvious to everyone, it's like a person watching poker on TV who can see everyone's cards going "well that outcome was obvious" clearly it wasn't to the people playing who couldn't see the cards.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Really enjoyed it and have lots of things to try in our IT dept!
They do just throw everything at Bill for the first half of the book, management are usually a bit more reasonable than that in my experience. Some of the methods of breaking down and prioritising the changes and projects could be expanded on, we always have arguments about what is a project, responsibilities of infrastructure vs apps teams, etc.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Entertaining, realistic and a great way to help your team get onboard with a lean transformation. I bought a few copies for the team and they all loved it. After they read it, we are now able to talk about Brent, the security nonsense, limiting work in progress and the three ways of DevOps in a out of work context that has helped my team grasp and retain lean fundamental messages without having to read heavy literature. A great way to help create a good collaborative culture within your development teams.
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