When I was first promoted to management, back at Mindcraft Software, I thought to myself, "Finally! Now we can start doing this project right."
Nevermind that I was 26 and didn't know the first thing about management, having never managed anything ever...I'd never taken a seminar, never even read a single book on the subject. All I managed to do was piss other people on the team off before the company fortunately went bankrupt, saving me from the embarrassment of not having shipped anything when I was supposed to.
If only the IGDA Leadership Forum was available then. I don't know if I could have talked my boss into sending me, but it's a lot cheaper than DICE ($350 if you're an IGDA member and you get the early rate, available until September 9th) and it's a great opportunity both to attend lectures on beginning and advanced topics in managing game development and to--perhaps more importantly?--just talk to other managers about how they handle things. Something I've found over the last two years is we tend to have a lot of the same problems...maybe not all families are unhappy differently after all...
Mindcraft would still have gone bankrupt but my career might have turned out differently. It was many years before someone trusted me with management responsibilities again.
And - if you're a project manager or an executive - send your leads. Particularly if they're green. If I had a dime for every time I saw somone promoted to management with no training who then had to be fired or demoted back to rank-and-file, I'd have a couple bucks by now.
I realize it's tough in a recession year, but the cost is paltry compared to the salaries you're paying these people, and the benefits...
Hell, if you don't send them to the Leadership Forum, at least send them to something. Get them some trianing of some kind.
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