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  • The Phoenix Project

  • A Novel about IT, DevOps, and Helping Your Business Win 5th Anniversary Edition
  • Written by: Gene Kim, Kevin Behr, George Spafford
  • Narrated by: Chris Ruen
  • Length: 14 hrs and 46 mins
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (290 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Five years after this sleeper hit took on the world of IT and flipped it on its head, the fifth anniversary edition of The Phoenix Project continues to guide IT in the DevOps revolution. In this newly updated and expanded edition of the best-selling The Phoenix Project, co-author Gene Kim includes a new afterword and a deeper delve into the Three Ways as described in The DevOps Handbook.

Bill, an IT manager at Parts Unlimited, has been tasked with taking on a project critical to the future of the business, code named Phoenix Project. But the project is massively over budget and behind schedule. The CEO demands Bill must 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, three luminaries of the DevOps movement deliver a story that anyone who works in IT will recognize. Listeners will not only learn how to improve their own IT organizations, they’ll never view IT the same.

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

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

What listeners say about The Phoenix Project

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Mostly obvious, painfully amateurish writing.

Contrived story where an organization is changed at a pace that is simply impossible to believe. The principles described are mostly sound, but real implementations are far more complex than the magical hand waving shown here.

Not to mention that there are a few episodes in the book that are very close to advocating illegal acts in many jurisdictions. Careful there, buddies.

4 people found this helpful

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Goldratt's "The Goal" applied to IT

I can relate all too well ... been there...got me thinking about applying Theory of Constraints to IT dev-ops projects...

2 people found this helpful

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A cheeky story that falls victim to proselytizing

If you are looking for a good story, stay away from this book. If you are looking for a niche, IT-based story then read the first half and stop when the main character quits their job.

The start of the story is wonderful, and I akin it to a thriller where instead of a victim being found, the SAN goes down. If you work in IT you will recognize several people from the office and sympathize with the main character.

Around the halfway point though, the story focuses on selling you the idea of Dev Ops, and sacrifices Wish Fulfillment at the cost of story, pacing and characters.

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Inspiring

This is one of the most interesting and inspiring audiobooks I have listened to. It has made me see the challenges and issues faced for the company I work for, and I hope I can bring my learnings to my team.

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Must read(listen)

Incredible book. Really great resource for those looking for understand more about devops. The book narrative is so brilliant and in a audio format is almost like a radio opera. Excellent!

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Insightful!

In the novel it seemed all problems happened in the project, before Project Phoenix started moving in the right direction with help of Unicorn. But, to me the key moment was that of trust building and accepting vulnerability from where the collaboration between Dev and Ops started. Key takeaways : Making work flow, Quick and timely feedback, and Continuous learning culture

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Excellent theory

Very interesting book. I really recommend it for all IT related professional, who would like to understand IT management processes.

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Interesting point of view about IT operations

Good approach about how to handle IT departments, the errors and failures described in this book are common in many companies and nobody do something about it. This book offers a way to solve most of them.

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  • KaB
  • 2020-04-05

Quite shallow

I'm probably lucky to have worked in a "dev-ops company". Therefore, I didn't learn much from this book. It was fun to listen, though. If you'd like to really understand the principles this books tries to convey, read is "The Principles of Product Development Flow: Second Generation Lean Product Development by Donald G. Reinertsen. Dev-ops works because it removes bottlenecks from IT processes by promoting using "work in process" constraints and fungible resources. "The Flow" describes why it *works* so well.

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Highly recommended

I’m still wondering why I waited this long before getting this amazing book. I recommend it to anyone involved in any type of delivery process.

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  • Peter
  • 2015-11-23

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.

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.

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.

47 people found this helpful

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  • Christopher
  • 2015-11-03

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

31 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Camila Wright
  • 2015-11-22

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.

21 people found this helpful

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  • Stacy Stark
  • 2015-05-09

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!

20 people found this helpful

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  • Ed Shepherdson
  • 2016-12-13

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.

15 people found this helpful

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  • Kevin King
  • 2016-05-02

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.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Cbrown
  • 2016-06-15

Amazing for developers

Even if you are not in a management role, this book is phenomenal! As a developer, there is so much to take away and apply to my everyday work. The only negative is that I wish I read this sooner.

5 people found this helpful

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  • skattoju
  • 2015-10-30

Demystifying Devops

Quite accurately describes contemporary IT culture in a way that I'm sure a lot of IT organizations can relate too and a surprisingly entertaining listen.

5 people found this helpful

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  • tania
  • 2015-10-30

Oh, the writing...

The book is badly written. No question. Amateurish at best. However, the content is good. Excellent information. If you're in IT in any capacity, it's a must.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Jason H
  • 2019-06-04

something to listen to...

There are some interesting tidbits to glean from this in regards to devops, but overall the story came off to me as a comedy because the whole story was over the top and not really believable. So, this is good for a few cheesy laughs mixed with a little interesting moments.

Didn't really care for the sterotyping developers and anyone not in operations. You can definitely tell this comes from a system admin perspective aka developers are the lazy and throw garbage at operations yada yada yada.

The voice actor was great really enjoyed that part.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Thierry
  • 2018-08-30

Excellent livre sur l'it et le mouvement devops.

Je recommande ce livre tres realiste, accessible et pertinent. Le format permet de montrer concretement le gap entre la vision IT en silo qu'on retrouve dans de nombreuses grandes organisations et la vision IT devops. Je regrette que le format audio ne permette pas d'acceder au texte et aux schemas. Faut-il acheter le livre deux fois pour l'avoir au complet?? Le format audio est parfait pour ce livre mais j'ai eu un peu de mal à suivre l'after word. Pour cela j'enleve une étoile.

2 people found this helpful

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  • mikus
  • 2022-06-13

Great to understand common problems with processes

If you're up to date with DevOps and general IT good practices you're probably not going to learn much and will see problems that this books tries to identify straight away. Still, the way the book is written gives some interesting perspective, some 'real-life' examples and tips. Ahh and good methaphores to car industry, that you might reuse convincing your managers to spend more money on operations.

On the other hand if you've spend too much time in a corporation that maybe stays a bit behind industry leaders in light processes and automation, you'll be amazed how simple changes can make everyone's life easier and a better product in the end. It might be also a good gift to you boss/manager to open his eyes a bit :)

If DevOps concept is new to you, or you're trying to reorganize your business to work smoother, definitely take a look.