• An Elegant Puzzle: Systems of Engineering Management

  • By: Will Larson
  • Narrated by: Tiffany Morgan
  • Length: 6 hrs and 36 mins
  • 4.3 out of 5 stars (333 ratings)

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An Elegant Puzzle: Systems of Engineering Management  By  cover art

An Elegant Puzzle: Systems of Engineering Management

By: Will Larson
Narrated by: Tiffany Morgan
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Publisher's summary

There's a saying that people don't leave companies, they leave managers. Management is a key part of any organization, yet the discipline is often self-taught and unstructured. Getting to the good solutions of complex management challenges can make the difference between fulfillment and frustration for teams, and, ultimately, the success or failure of companies.
 

Will Larson's An Elegant Puzzle orients around the particular challenges of engineering management - from sizing teams to technical debt to succession planning - and provides a path to the good solutions. Drawing from his experience at Digg, Uber, and Stripe, Will Larson has developed a thoughtful approach to engineering management that leaders of all levels at companies of all sizes can apply. An Elegant Puzzle balances structured principles and human-centric thinking to help any leader create more effective and rewarding organizations for engineers to thrive in.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.

©2019 Stripe Press (P)2019 Stripe Press

What listeners say about An Elegant Puzzle: Systems of Engineering Management

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Terrible narrator

Sounds like it's being read by a text to speech program. Needs a narrator who can read like a human

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29 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Good book, terrible narrator.

No flow, no pauses, just terrible. Alexa would have done a better job narrating it.

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6 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Grow organization as Engineering Manager

It is not another leadership book, but more how to build and grow organization and what kind of challenges you can face as engineering manager, and how to deal with them.
Great source information and inspiration.

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4 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Insightful, yet succinct

Great read that covers many topics and leaves the reader yearning for more. Will's list of books and white papers at the end has inspired me to do way more reading.

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2 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Great content, ruined by a robotic monotoned voice

I love Will Larson, and much of the content in this book and other material. I found myself unable to listen to this for more than a few minutes, because the voice acting is just so bad.

it reads like an instruction manual, by somebody who has no idea what the instructions are building.

therr absolutely needs to be a new edition that brings the material to life rather than killing it.

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1 person found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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The book is awesome, but not for listening

The book is really interesting and practical. Reader may treat it as a set of guides. Because of that it's better to read the book than to listen. Also it makes sense to read just parts you are interested in in the particular moment.

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Great book, and not limited to Computer Science

This book is great. I have been a first level Mechanical Engineering Supervisor in the Department of Defense for 5 years, and I loved this book. There weren't a lot of epiphanies, but there were a lot of tweaks that I could make to take away. The discussion of hypergrowth also applies to the replacement boom that we have been going through after the great resignation. The part that I liked the most is that Will Larson is still an engineering manager. I have hated every management book I've read by someone who has graduate degrees in management, but whose only actual management experience is in setting up a company to sell their speaking tours (Brene Brown). This book is so much better because he pulls from his actual experience.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Good overview of best practices

Working in a large tech company I found nearly everything mentioned was something that is being followed at the company. I believe this book is in line with current tech best practices, but I wish it went into more depth. There was a lack of data on most of the statements.

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Some good points

This was an interesting book in that it is the author’s experience and observations, not any case studies or experiments. It did have some interesting points, but then went downhill for me. It covered a very wide variety of work topics - the points were logical, but without any case studies to back them up. The points became more ‘stating the obvious’ as it went, but still reasonable to review.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Useful, but quite rigid

The book certainly contains lots of useful advice to new leaders. It just seems like a very one-size-fits-all attitude, that does not resonate well woth me.

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