Enron, the Emails

Watched “Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room” last night.

The documentary was not as in-depth as the book: detailing the “mark to market” and “off-balance sheet entities” created by the management of Enron. The impact of the resulting US Law named Sarbanes-Oxley made financial auditors more responsible and powerful within organisations; and personally changed my last 3-4 years at Adobe. Paperwork and legal city.Thanks to technology, you are able to do some filtering through 500,000 of Enron’s emails from 1999 to 2002. (link thanks to Andrew Smith). Just like looking through someone’s trash, there are few diamonds amongst the organisational announcements and spam.

Joel Over-Simplifies Management

Joel on Software, one of the top ten blogs on the web follows the life and tribulations of CEO Joel Spolsky and his company, Fog Creek Software.

The movie/DVD, Project Aardvark, 12 Weeks with Geeks is an excellent view into a modern software company as you follow interns through the creation and release of Fog Creek Copilot.

In recent days, Joel has been over-simplifying management into what I classify as the push, pull and mingle methods:

Push: Command and Control

Pull: Econ 101

Mingle: The Identity Management Method

What Joel hasn’t talked about is Leadership.

In truth, good managers are using a combination of all three of these all of the time. Managing and motivating employees is one of the most difficult skills to learn. Once mastered, you are leading.