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Leadership, Teamwork, and Trust: Building a Competitive Software Capability by James W. Over, Watts S. Humphrey

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4. Managing Knowledge Work

Management, as an orderly discipline, had its start only about 100 years ago when Frederick Winslow Taylor published his landmark book, The Principles of Scientific Management [Taylor 1911]. Taylor, who lived from 1856 to 1915, was an American mechanical engineer who started studying manual labor in England as a young man. He originated the idea of breaking tasks into small steps, studying how best to perform each step, and then training workers to work in just that way. He looked at every aspect of the job from the most efficient tools, methods, and materials to the way the steps should be combined to accomplish the total job.

Taylor’s work led to the time-and-motion studies that are a common practice of industrial ...

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