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The Unicorn Project

By Gene Kim

A Novel about Digital Disruption, Developers, and Overthrowing the Ancient Powerful Order

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Now a Wall Street Journal Bestseller!

This highly anticipated follow-up to the bestselling title The Phoenix Project takes another look at Parts Unlimited, this time from the perspective of software development. In The Unicorn Project, we follow Maxine, a senior lead developer and architect, as she is exiled to the Phoenix Project, to the horror of her friends and colleagues, as punishment for contributing to a payroll outage. She tries to survive in what feels like a heartless and uncaring bureaucracy and to work within a system where no one can get anything done without endless committees, paperwork, and approvals.

  • Publication Date November 26, 2019
  • Pages 352
  • Hardcover Dimensions 6 x 9 inches, black and white
  • Hardcover ISBN 9781942788768
  • eBook ISBN 9781942788775
  • Kindle ISBN 9781942788782

Features

  • Allegory for Excellence

    In this follow-up to the bestselling The Phoenix Project, author Gene Kim highlights cultural and technical excellence as we follow a fictionalized team of rebels looking to save their company.

  • Five Ideals

    Learn the five ideals as the team race against time to save the company.

  • Developers Highlighted

    This book is DevOps from a developer's perspective with the characters experiencing all of the ups and downs of trying to create value for a company in a legacy organization.

  • All Levels

    This highly accessible book is for all levels of technology practitioners.

About the Book

This highly anticipated follow-up to the bestselling title The Phoenix Project takes another look at Parts Unlimited, this time from the perspective of software development.

In The Unicorn Project, we follow Maxine, a senior lead developer and architect, as she is exiled to the Phoenix Project, to the horror of her friends and colleagues, as punishment for contributing to a payroll outage. She tries to survive in what feels like a heartless and uncaring bureaucracy and to work within a system where no one can get anything done without endless committees, paperwork, and approvals.

One day, she is approached by a ragtag bunch of misfits who say they want to overthrow the existing order, to liberate developers, to bring joy back to technology work, and to enable the business to win in a time of digital disruption. To her surprise, she finds herself drawn ever further into this movement, eventually becoming one of the leaders of the Rebellion, which puts her in the crosshairs of some familiar and very dangerous enemies.

The Age of Software is here, and another mass extinction event looms—this is a story about rebel developers and business leaders working together, racing against time to innovate, survive, and thrive in a time of unprecedented uncertainty…and opportunity.

Gene Kim
Gene Kim

Gene Kim

Award winning CTO, researcher, and author.

To Author Archive

"Every company going through a digital transformation needs to make this a must-read for all leaders."

Courtney Kissler

VP, Global Technology NIKE, Inc

"The Unicorn Project is the organizational civil-war novel that every technology and business trailblazer must read."

Christopher O'Malley

President and CEO Compuware

"Gene Kim does a masterful job of showing how a dynamic, discovery-oriented approach to technology transformation can combine the efforts of many to create lasting business advantages for all."

Dr. Steven Spear

Author of The High Velocity Edge Sr. Lecturer at MIT Principal of HVE LLC

"The Unicorn Project is amazing, and I loved it 100 times more than The Phoenix Project…. It made me remember every step we’ve gone through at adidas in the last 4 years."

Fernando Cornago

Senior Director Platform Engineering Adidas

"As important as The Phoenix Project was for managing organizational change, The Unicorn Project is for the vast majority of us who actually solve problems. This book provides a vision for software engineers for generations to come."

Dr. Tom Longstaff

Chief Technology Officer Carnegie Mellon University Software Engineering Institute

"The Unicorn Project clarifies the what and why of digital transformation."

Jeffrey Snover

Technical Fellow Microsoft

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