Asshole driven development

Scott Berkun has a great post entitled Asshole Driven Development, which expounds upon various software project management styles, including Cognitive Dissonance Development, Cover Your Ass Engineering and my favourite, Development By Denial. The eponymous management style is described as:

Asshole Driven development (ADD) – Any team where the biggest jerk makes all the big decisions is asshole driven development. All wisdom, logic or process goes out the window when Mr. Asshole is in the room, doing whatever idiotic, selfish thing he thinks is best. There may rules and processes, but Mr. A breaks them and people follow anyway.

Sound familiar? There are another couple of hundred management anti-patterns listed in the comments, from which I rather like Idiot MBA-Driven Development.

These aren’t just specific to software development, though, but are general management anti-patterns. I recognise both Asshole Driven Management and Idiot MBA-Driven Management, for example, from personal experience. Not to mention a wonderful case of Management by Denial that was so point-blank it was almost convincing, but when someone says, “Oh, no, we don’t have that problem here. We only hire smart people.” you just know there’s going to be trouble.