Monday, January 16, 2012

Managing without management

For the past 6 weeks I have been working at a new company - hence the lack of updates on this blog.

My previous employer - Answers.com - was big into management and SEO.

My current employer - Hyperlync - does not believe in either.

Their site is all but non-existant - and most pages are carefully spider-proofed. They generate revenue by creating products that people actually use, and they have no need to be in Google's index. Those people who need their products know where to find them.

This means that we never hear - and really don't care - about Google events and other tragedies that affect SEO-driven companies. What a relief.

They also don't believe in management. The 3 founders all work for a living; 2 of them write code the 3rd does the sales & marketing.

There are no status reports and nobody looking over your shoulder. As soon as a product is sold, the relevant employees are informed and each does his part to make it ship.

Since there are no teams, you cannot rely (or hide behind) your teammates or superior to get the job done.

While this may sound like a startup, it's not - and they are already profitable; so much so that we each got the latest version Kindle to celebrate Chanuka / 2012.

There is one Project Manager, but she mainly does product-management; deciding on the look-&-feel. She does almost no coordinating, scheduling or running around.

More on management-less companies in future posts.

- Danny

P.S. So what do I do? I went back to 1995; doing setups. This time on Linux, Mac, Windows and Androids.

3 comments:

  1. But if you don't have a manager how do you know whom to abuse? :-)

    Regarding SEO, I definitely understand the benefits of having a site that successfully creates and sells products that people need, and that doesn't rely on search traffic and isn't vulnerable to Google changes.

    BUT -- really? Everybody who could use your services knows about you already? Nobody is Googling for "content management and delivery systems" or "private label application solutions" (etc.) that would be happy to buy and use your solutions if they found you?

    I think with SEO (and management) avoiding it may be better than using it wrong. But doing it right may be even better.

    BTW, if you change your mind about remaining mostly invisible to the Googlers looking for your services, or just want to get better at researching your potential customers' activities on Google in order to better understand your potential market, I can set you up with a good deal :-)

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  2. We are now four years on. The strain of working in knee jerk mode, 'As soon as a product is sold, the relevant employees are informed and each does his part to make it ship' may no longer apply when team work is required in multiple discipline projects.
    Project management for the sake of project management is often a wasteful overhead, however, the opposite extreme where the boss is the project manager and one of the team leads to lack of direction and a possible hopping from one emergency to another. This we used to call management by crisis. Project management was developed to prevent this happening. "They generate revenue by creating products that people actually use" presumes that the competition is inadequate. This may be a short lived policy.

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