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Publisher's Summary

Bill is an IT manager at Parts Unlimited. It's Tuesday morning and on his drive into the office, Bill gets a call from the CEO.

The company's new IT initiative, code named Phoenix Project, is critical to the future of Parts Unlimited, but the project is massively over budget and very late. The CEO wants Bill to report directly to him and fix the mess in 90 days, or else Bill's entire department will be outsourced.

With the help of a prospective board member and his mysterious philosophy of The Three Ways, Bill starts to see that IT work has more in common with manufacturing plant work than he ever imagined. With the clock ticking, Bill must organize work flow, streamline interdepartmental communications, and effectively serve the other business functions at Parts Unlimited.

In a fast-paced and entertaining style, narrator Chris Ruen brings to life a story by three luminaries of the DevOps movement. Listeners will not only learn how to improve their own IT organizations, they'll never view IT the same way again.

©2014 Gene Kim, Kevin Behr, and George Spafford (P)2015 Gene Kim, Kevin Behr, and George Spafford

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Theory and Practice merged

Any additional comments?

I honestly didn't know a book like this could exist. The format really took me by surprise, but luckily, it was a pleasant one. Essentially it follows a newly promoted IT operations manager as he tries to improve the way the IT department works in his company while struggling with all the bureaucratic challenges that come with higher management positions. The really interesting part though, is that the book goes through a lot of sound theoretical concepts and we see how they're applied practically in the business.<br/><br/>It's still more of a novel in that it has a story and interesting characters that you see grow, which really are the driving force behind this book. The story and setting are relatively basic, but that's actually perfect since it's easier to relate to when there's all the theoretical content to get your head around. It's hard to be too critical of the characters, since again, they're mostly there to make a point and generalize the type of people that you encounter in organizations. That being said, there were some characters and events that were a little too unbelievable, which often broke the sense of realism and made you realize that you're reading a fictional story. <br/><br/>This kind of book would be a great source for students to study from since rarely have I seen theory and practice so closely linked in a book. Usually it's a ton of theory pushed down your throat with a sprinkling of real world examples thrown in. There's definitely some leaps and issues that would have to be addressed, but if anything, that would make it more interesting to disseminate. I'm just a bit worried now that someone reading this thinks they can turn their whole company around in three months.

22 of 24 people found this review helpful

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Wonderful!

If you work in IT, you MUST read this book! It will save your sanity! Having been in IT for my entire career, it hits closer to home than anything I've read before. It's like "The Goal" by Eli Goldratt for IT!

10 of 11 people found this review helpful

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The most gripping novel I have read in a long time

I have been in the help desk, I have been in IT management, I have been in the upper echelons of management and business ownership.
The ideas put forth in this book are groundbreaking for today's economy and will be the groundwork for the highly agile businesses of the 21st Century.
If you want to make progress in your Enterprise and you are getting blowback from your managers, give them this book.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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I have no idea why I liked it.

I am not in business or IT. this couldn't be further from my field or life. but still, somehow the story was compelling enough that I read it for the pure entertainment and really enjoyed it.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

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Must read for IT professionals

The story line in this book has been repeated thousands of time in many organizations around the world. One of the best books I have read on understanding the importance of understanding your resource constraints and how they impact your whole organization from IT to business functions. Gaining alignment and focus on the right projects is the key to driving your business forward. Book also highlights a lot of Agile principals as well. Good read. Easy to relate to the theme of the book.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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Better than I thought

I am not an IT guy but a blue collar worker. There is a lot of understanding of processes that translate to everything in the business field.

I would recommend this to everyone who is in any business. It gives good examples of work and problem solving.

Take a chance and listen to, or read this book

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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"Blew my mind"

You'll find yourself in the story if you're in IT.This completley changed my thought process when it came to workflow.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Excellent book for IT professionals

Excellent book performed by an excellent narrator which feels painfully real at times for IT

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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The Book Version of "Penthouse Letters" but for IT

"Dear Penthouse, I never thought it would happen to me. The business leaders love me and have named their firstborns after me. etc"

The ending is just adorable in its "fairy tale"/"never gonna happen" scenario that they play out. I do not want to be a spoiler, so I will leave it at that with the tease that in my experience the typical CEO did not get to the place they are in a company through their impressive self-introspection skill-set. NTTAWWT

All kidding aside, this book is fantastic! It is a great way to introduct somebody to the concept of DevOps. What is DevOps, you ask? DevOps is a way that IT people can turn code and deliverables around faster.

This fictional account of a company trying to get ahead of its competition speaks directly to anyone in IT who has struggled to meet timelines and business needs. If you are an unappreciated IT manager - give this book a try.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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A Fable indeed!

Great representation of the last 13 years of my career...except for the fairy tale ending.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Matt Williams
  • 12-01-15

An example of Audiobooks being better

This is one of those books where reading it would have been much harder than listening to the audiobook. Listening to it being spoken makes it feel a little bit like just overhearing a conversation from a friend or colleague, which is easier to listen to than read. The book is full of office politics, and overcoming problems in an office, so if that type of thing bothers you it's one to avoid, but if you find office politics amusing - or can enjoy the absurdity of it all then it's a book you'll enjoy

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • JSW
  • 05-14-15

How IT can help the business WIN

An eye opener. A good read, good therapy, a great mindset and a practical guide.

If you are a passionate practitioner of technology to achieve successful business outcomes then read this book.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Mr Anthony Fawkes
  • 06-13-15

project management and IT

This is probably one of the best books I've ever listened to. The storytelling is great and helps give you a grounding in IT operations and project management. I whole heartedly recommend this book.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Simon
  • 07-27-16

Thoughtful Parallels

This book novelises quite successfully a journey of discovery as an IT Manager raises his sights and game to focus on the organisation not the tool. As one character says 'it is not rocket science' but even the obvious point land in unfamiliar ways and I found myself comparing the story to my own organisation. This has a wider application than just IT. It was a pleasure to consider these ways of thinking in the setting of a pretty good novel ableit that some characters seem broadly drawn. That said - the characters were drawn the way you see your colleagues and the story is told first person. A good read and listen.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Russell
  • 07-19-16

If you work in tech

If you work in IT/sys eng/Dev/Dev Ops, you need to read this book. I worked in a department that had issues like this and now we are sitting in a better place than we were then, so can relate.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Pawan
  • 07-12-16

A perfect introduction to DevOps

Very well written and naratted.... A great way to explain the problem and then solve it step by step......

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • M. E. Gideon
  • 07-08-15

Excellent fable on the role of I.T.in business.

Well worth the listen. Could apply to other functions too but to a lesser extent

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Mr. Anthony Dawson
  • 02-08-17

How true

Would you listen to The Phoenix Project again? Why?

I plan on listening to this audiobook regularly to remind me how to turn a horror into a joy. This book probably sums up most IT companies and their bad practices and how to make them right - this book is a reminder of how to do things properly

Who was your favorite character and why?

Eric is the saviour of this book. He makes comparisons to non-IT departments and shows that a department is just a department - and IT is not sacred at all.

What about Chris Ruen’s performance did you like?

Chris Ruen's delivery was excellent. He wasn't just reading. He got into all the characters - it was super.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 07-27-15

Amazing

From large IT into lean principles and devops. What a wonderful book.

Powerful story and messages about triumph in the face of adversity and the application of common sense and team work

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 05-29-15

Awesome

This should be required reading for anyone working in IT or In a senior business role.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Ruby
  • 06-11-15

Interesting story

It is an interesting story and people can gain insights on process management. Narrative is good - worth to listen!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Warren Moore
  • 12-16-17

it's worth your time and money.

lovit it. will read it again. This time as a text book for getting things done right.

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  • Becci
  • 10-17-17

Practical, great story on applying Lean I.T.

The audiobook format was great for this book. It’s a relaxed narrative. 5* for lean fanatics with a happy ending.

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  • Alexander
  • 09-10-17

It's worth listening to twice!

The story is surprisingly engaging for the subject. It fuses relatable characters and an interesting plot with solid advice for Dev ops.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-14-17

Entertaining engaging invaluable

Who has ever worked in IT and hasn't been there?...
Such a very entertaining and informative way of putting together words and ideas that surround the complexity that is faced by businesses and IT groups, especially as things scale. The more people that get involved, the personalities that get involved, and The Tangled Web that we create with people and systems is phenomenal and so is this book for pointing it out so entertainingly.
I listened to the audio book and was spellbound by the uncanny similarity to so many projects in organisations that I've worked for. Who can't relate to the characters and their plight?
I didn't write down the dropped names and processes and ideas that we're mentioned in the first time I listened but I'm pretty sure I'll be certain to do it the second time around or when I go and get myself the paperback copy as well. It's gotta be worth it...

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  • Laurna
  • 08-08-17

I'd recommend the goal instead

This may be helpful for people who have not had exposure to lean six sigma. If you are a lean six sigma fan and have been working to apply the skills to improve IT workflow, this book will be very slow... but you could suggest it as a read for anyone who is not on board yet.

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  • Kon Soulianidis
  • 07-11-17

Fantastic book. great narration

loved the different voices the narrator puts on for each character. must have been hard to swap during the recordings. does this fantastic book a lot of justice.
speaking of which, the story is somewhat artificial but it provides a great stage to learn the lessons of achieving flow in IT

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  • Ivan Wu
  • 05-28-17

how is it possible it was so good!

I work as a finance guy in IT companies and some of the guys recommended this to me. I am surprised at how good this was. It's about work! no superpowered demi god zombie killing wizards robots, but I really enjoyed it. Maybe because it was relatable and so less work then usual fiction (I have a lazy imagination, dam you tv and movies). Highly Recommended.

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  • Moff
  • 04-30-17

everyone in IT operations should read this book.

All levels of IT operations should read this book as Part of training for the real world

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  • Anonymous User
  • 04-20-17

a story about adopting ITIL

Most part of the store is how the IT adopting ITIL, and trying to align with business. If you know how ITIL works, you might struggle to finish the book. Narrator's performance is good.