Cover image for Leading geeks : how to manage and lead people who deliver technology
Leading geeks : how to manage and lead people who deliver technology
Glen, Paul, 1965-
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
San Francisco, CA : Jossey-Bass, [2003]

Physical Description:
xxii, 253 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm.
General Note:
"A Warren Bennis book."
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
T49.5 .G554 2003 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



Winner of the 2003 Financial Times Germany/getAbstract Business& Finance Book Award

Leading Geeks challenges the conventional wisdom thatleadership methods are universal and gives executives and managersthe understanding they need to manage and lead the technologists onwhom they have become so dependent. This much-needed book? writtenin nontechnical language by Paul Glen, a highly acclaimedmanagement consultant? gives clear directions on how to effectivelylead these brilliant yet notoriously resistant-to-being-managedknowledge workers. Glen not only provides proven managementstrategies but also background on why traditional approaches oftendon't work with geeks. Leading Geeks describes the beliefsand behavior of geeks, their group dynamics, and the unique natureof technical work. It also offers a unique twelve-part model thatexplains how knowledge workers deliver value to anorganization.

Author Notes

Paul Glen has served as an adjunct faculty member in the MBA programs at the University of Southern California's Marshall School of Business and Loyola Marymount University.

Reviews 1

Publisher's Weekly Review

Technology has so clearly woven itself into the fabric of business culture that publishing Glen's book on how to manage the people who produce high tech makes perfect sense. The author, founder of a consulting firm specializing in IT organizations, assumes that "geeks" are not everyday people, and draws on his experience to present clear and simple techniques for employers to not just get what they need out of tech workers but to become the kind of managers who will mesh well with this new kind of employee. Glen's insight is to treat high technology as a creative product produced by temperamental people who are a cross between artists and professionals. This view stems from the ambiguity of "geekwork" and the fact that geeks usually know more about what they do than do their managers. Though Glen doesn't advocate turning the factories over to the workers, his aim is to make managers more effective by teaching them about the people they lead, not by giving them tools to bend employees to their will. He does an excellent job of enumerating geek characteristics and the context in which geekwork takes place, providing ample material on what works with geeks and what doesn't, such as "intrinsic" or "extrinsic" motivators, and valuable advice, like "never underestimate the power of free food." Though it doesn't contain much new material, Glen's easily readable book will prove exceptionally useful for managers who feel left behind by the pace of technology or bosses seeking to better understand their information age employees. (Nov.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Table of Contents

Warren BennisDavid H. Maister
Editor's Notep. xi
Forewordp. xiii
Introductionp. xv
Acknowledgmentsp. xxi
Overview: The Challenge of Geeksp. 1
1. Geeks, Leadership, and Geek Leadershipp. 3
Part 1 The Context of Geek Leadershipp. 19
2. The Essential Geekp. 27
3. Groups of Geeksp. 44
4. The Nature of Geekworkp. 57
5. Performing Geekworkp. 74
Part 2 The Content of Geek Leadershipp. 97
6. Nurturing Motivationp. 103
7. Providing Internal Facilitationp. 122
8. Furnishing External Representationp. 142
9. Managing Ambiguityp. 158
10. Selecting and Organizing Geekworkp. 179
11. Uniting Geeks and Geekworkp. 197
Conclusion: Harmonizing Context and Contentp. 219
12. How Geek Leaders Leadp. 221
Appendix Models and Listsp. 235
Notesp. 241
Referencesp. 243
The Authorp. 247
Indexp. 249