“A couple of years ago, I went into a big-box shoe store and bought a pair of sneakers. At the checkout counter, the cashier grabbed a can of that bogus silicone spray stores always try to up-sell you. It's supposed to make sneakers shiny and waterproof, but it doesn't seem to do anything.”
From my latest Inc. column: Sins of Commissions
My dad emailed to add:
The same problem arises when you set measurable incentives (money for better test results) in educational policies like No Child Left Behind.
You’re reading Joel on Software, stuffed with years and years of completely raving mad articles about software development, managing software teams, designing user interfaces, running successful software companies, and rubber duckies.
I’m Joel Spolsky, co-founder of Fog Creek Software, a New York company that proves that you can treat programmers well and still be highly profitable. Programmers get private offices, free lunch, and work 40 hours a week. Customers only pay for software if they’re delighted. We make Trello, which lets you organize anything, together, FogBugz, enlightened issue tracking software for bug tracking, and Kiln, which provides distributed version control and code reviews. I’m also the co-founder and CEO of Stack Exchange. More about me.