I have the unique pleasure and privilege of writing today’s blog to recommend Gerald Weinberg’s fabulous book entitled The Secrets of Consulting (Dorset House Publishing, January 1986, ISBN: 0932633013). The title is actually something of a misnomer, in that it presents its audience as those who make their living by consulting with others (or who are considering a career change involving a consulting role). And while it is a peachy-keen reference for such professionals, it is also helpful to anyone who works in a service provider role to other organizations, or units within an organization. If that doesn’t describe IT perfectly, I’m not sure what does. At any rate, I’m firmly of the opinion that anyone who works in an IT job who also has to deal with users, or management outside of IT, will realize some amazing benefits from reading this book.
And that’s not the only reason IT professionals should read this book. It’s a paragon of communication all by its lonesome, and manages to be laugh-out-loud funny consistently from start to finish while also presenting incredibly valuable nuggets of information from a seemingly inexhaustible supply of same. There’s a good reason why this book hasn’t gone out of print since it first appeared in 1986, and why it remains a top pick for management, consulting, and even IT reading lists over 30 years after it first published. How can you go wrong with a book that includes such immortal labels as “Rudy’s Law of Rutabagas,” “The Inverse Gilded Rule,” and “The Potato Chip Principle?”
If you need some good, strong belly laughs to help you get some excellent career-enhancing advice down rush right out and buy this book (cheap used copies are plentiful, thanks to the number of years this book has been available, or you can pay around $60 for a brand-new or “like new” copy). My advice is: “Read. This. Book.”