Posted by Brent Gregory on December 9th, 2013
|1||Get a job at a company that sells software.||Work where you directly impact company revenue and growth.|
|2||Determine the critical properties of the software that drive purchase decisions.||Understand the link between your software and revenue.|
|3||Get a job in a department where you can affect those critical properties.||Go where you can have the most impact.|
|4||Find or build a system that measures the critical properties.||Measuring is the first step toward improving.|
|5||Write code that improves the measurements of critical properties.||This is how you add value.|
|6||Deliver your improvements to customers, and ensure they see the benefits.||This is how your value is realized.|
|7||Review your progress, and adjust.||Feedback loops drive improvement.|
I use these steps every day. I work at a company that sells the software that creates integrated circuits. Some critical properties are the run time of the software, and the clock frequency and power dissipation of the integrated circuits. I use a suite of realistic test cases to guide improvements to the critical properties. When a project looks like a winner on the internal tests, I take it to customers to see how it works in the real world. At every step, feedback loops keep things on track, and revenue is the ultimate feedback.
I developed these steps based on my experience working at Synopsys. They might also work in other industries. I think they work especially well at Synopsys because integrated circuit success is exquisitely tied to a set of crisply measurable critical properties, and those properties are driven by the quality of the algorithms we create.
Interested? Send me an email by clicking on my name above.