Because I am not a member of the IT profession, I began reading this book under the impression that I would have trouble recommending it. It didn't work out that way at all. This book goes on the shelf in your office that is labeled "IT for everybody." In my experience there aren't too many books that are this good on the subject.
When you pick it up, go directly to Chapter 3, "The Anatomy of a Project." In it you will find answers to the question I have often asked in previous corporate positions after I have turned on my computer at 8 a.m. and realized there has been a radical improvement in the system—namely, "How did they do this?"
My guess is techno-geeks and techno-nerds (like me) will both find much to appreciate in the work of Andrews and Johnson. What I really love about the above-named chapter is a list of five unrealistic assumptions about how to manage IT projects. Because I know you can't wait, here they are: The environment will remain stable during the project; end users can define, in advance, exactly what will be needed; complex problems can be solved completely on the first attempt; requirements can be precisely defined before packaged software is selected; and users will cheerfully accept changes in their work environment. In other words—look out!
For every cautionary tale presented there are techniques, tools, ideas, cases and intuition that will help you better manage what has become one of the great and unknown competitive advantages any company could hope for: a sound method of managing internal information. The CEO who is harping on you to, in the authors' words, "maximize the talent of the IT group while minimizing their numbers" had better read this book.