February 20, 2013

One developer or technical manager is not interchangeable with another. That’s why you can’t hire great “knowledge workers” (geeks!) with a checklist. You need Johanna Rothman’s Hiring Geeks That Fit to take the guesswork and cost out of hiring.

You’ve enjoyed Explore It! in beta, now it’s finished and in print! You’ll learn essential skills of a master explorer, including how to analyze software to discover key points of vulnerability, how to design experiments on the fly, how to hone your observation skills, and how to focus your efforts. And speaking of exploring, did you know John Glenn was the first American to orbit the earth on this day in 1962?

Read on for details on both of these titles.

Enjoy!

Hiring Geeks That Fit

Knowledge workers-your geeks-are different from skill-based staff. So, you should hire them differently. You need to analyze your situation, determine the problems you have, understand your culture, and then you can hire the right kinds of people.

Cultural fit is critical, because we rarely fire people based on technical skill. But we frequently fire them because of that elusive “fit.” And that’s an expensive proposition.

Hiring great geeks forces you to recognize and match culture, non-technical qualities, preferences and skills, and finally, technical skills. These people will adapt their knowledge to your specific situation, the context. They are the sum of both what they know and how they apply that knowledge to the product.

As a result, one developer, tester, or technical manager is not interchangeable with another. This makes hiring technical people one of the most critical and difficult processes a technical manager or team can undertake.

Hiring Geeks That Fit takes the guesswork out of hiring and reduces the risk of costly hiring mistakes. You’ll learn how to:

  • Develop a hiring strategy so you know how to solve your problem
  • Analyze the job, so the job description and ad falls out of the analysis
  • Develop effective ads for different mediums
  • Review resumes quickly to determine Yes, No, or Maybe candidates
  • Develop behavior-description questions and auditions
  • Create phone screens that help you know who to bring in for an in-person interview
  • Make the most of an in-person interview
  • Check references
  • Extend an offer that will attract a win-win acceptance or tender a gentle-but-decisive rejection
  • Create a great first day experience for new hires
  • Learn how to create a buddy system to decrease the cost of a new hire
  • What to do if you can’t find someone

You, your team, and your organization will live with the long-term consequences of your hiring decision. Investing the time for you and your team in how to hire and interview will pay off fast.

This book was written and produced entirely by the author. We are proud to be distributing it.

Now available from pragprog.com/book/jrgeeks.

Explore It! Reduce Risk and Increase Confidence with Exploratory Testing

Software is full of surprises. No matter how careful or skilled you are, when you create software it can behave differently than you intended. Exploratory testing mitigates those risks.

Part 1 introduces the core, essential skills of a master explorer. You’ll learn to craft charters to guide your exploration, to observe what’s really happening (hint: it’s harder than it sounds), to identify interesting variations, and to determine what expected behavior should be when exercising software in unexpected ways.

Part 2 builds on that foundation. You’ll learn how to explore by varying interactions, sequences, data, timing, and configurations. Along the way you’ll see how to incorporate analysis techniques like state modeling, data modeling, and defining context diagrams into your explorer’s arsenal.

Part 3 brings the techniques back into the context of a software project. You’ll apply the skills and techniques in a variety of contexts and integrate exploration into the development cycle from the very beginning.

You can apply the techniques in this book to any kind of software. Whether you work on embedded systems, Web applications, desktop applications, APIs, or something else, you’ll find this book contains a wealth of concrete and practical advice about exploring your software to discover its capabilities, limitations, and risks.

Now in print and shipping from pragprog.com/book/ehxta.

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Coming Soon:

  • Practical Programming, 2nd Ed. in beta
  • Functional Programming in Java: Harnessing the Power of Java 8 Lambda Expressions in beta
  • TDD for C++ Programmers in beta

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