Independent Consulting provides a lot of freedoms in life. But also a lot of risks. If you do it right, you keep your bucket always more than full, never put more than 50% of your eggs in one basket, and you learn to make time for yourself, just so that you don’t go crazy.
Something else that is common place for IC’s, is the vast numbers of Project Managers. Project Managers are an interesting breed because they can come from all over. They can come from the Business functions of an organization; from IT as a BA / SA, Operations, or best, a Developer; they might have a background in Education; they could have bought or started a small business; software world, the not-so-software world. Project Managers come from everywhere.
I think, the best PM’s I have ever run into are equally male and female. Here is a list of qualities that I feel makes an amazing PM in the software development world:
- Smart and Quick
- Listened and Understood
- Multiplied LOE’s by three
- Built a Relationship with their Developers
- Played Interference with the Business
- Knew how to say No
It’s funny how often I see deadlines set without even really analyzing true component breakdowns and amounts of time to complete. Or how often I hear an unrealistic deadline. Pressure from the top just rolls down hill and it puts everyone in a spot that is not very fun.