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Modern Software Leadership

Software projects are expensive undertakings. Many businesses struggle to deliver software change quickly, reliably and, more importantly, securely. Additionally, for the most part, enterprise application development and delivery is slow and sometimes scarily insecure.

How can you overcome the inertia of legacy systems while building and delivering new systems faster?

How can you navigate a deployment landscape which has grown over decades and involves many overlapping areas of responsibility?

How can you deliver more securely without considering wholesale changes to your working practices and organisation?

Richard Bown's Modern Software Leadership

The modern software delivery landscape is complex. Architecture and delivery process are closely related. There is a confusion of best practices and frameworks for organising the software development practice before you even get to making technology choices, infrastructure choices, architecture choices. And what to do next?

What will you learn?

Modern Software Leadership spans three modules and teaches techniques to help you identify areas of risk, find the social, organizational and architectural constraints holding back your delivery and allow you to reshape your teams and technology to improve.

You will learn how to work with your existing enterprise architecture when the domain is uncertain and make confident decisions.

Modern Software Leadership teaches practical techniques for making knowledge-based decisions for change and allows participants to work with these techniques together.

Target Audience

This book is suitable for those who want to influence the digital direction of their organisations and is aimed at business IT managers, change managers, and program and project managers who don’t necessarily have a software engineering background or who do and are keen to update their skills and learn more about modern software delivery.

It is designed for leaders who:

  • Want to work alongside development and operations teams more effectively
  • Want a systematic and sustainable way to improve the speed and quality of software delivery
  • Want the best technology solutions without higher costs
  • Have security concerns around the software supply chain
  • Are struggling to justify the costs of more “digital transformation”
  • Are unsure how to move forward with IT purchasing decisions
  • Want to be able to negotiate more effectively with suppliers and vendors

Part 1 – Our Enterprise Landscape

  • Building vs buying
  • What does modern architecture look like?
  • The challenges of the enterprise landscape
  • Why estimations are always wrong
  • Solution architecture vs enterprise architecture
  • A confusion of best practices (Agile and Development)
  • Why is security so hard?
  • Why does Digital Transformation fail?

Part 2 – How We Experience Software Delivery

  • What is developer culture?
  • Overcoming design by committee
  • The importance of tooling
  • Building trust across the organization
  • Remote or office? What’s the real impact?
  • How we slow ourselves down (Pull requests, reviews)

Part 3 – Building The Modern Software Delivery Organization

  • Organisational design for resilience and flow (Team Topologies, Conway’s Law, Theory of constraints)
  • Scaffolding For DevOps, Continuous Deployment First
  • Measuring with DORA metrics
  • Emergent design techniques (TDD, DDD, OOP)
  • Staying secure and getting faster

How will this book help?

  • You might have already done or be contemplating a Digital Transformation.
  • You want more insights into your development process and be able to improve it without wholesale change.
  • You feel you’re paying vendors and third parties and don’t yet have enough insight into owning and managing your applications.
  • You want to bring more knowledge and expertise in-house.
  • You are looking for new opportunities to improve speed and security without increasing costs.
  • You might be paying consultancies for their services but don’t know if they are delivering what you need.


Q: Why should I read this book?

A: You want more clarity and control over your software development and delivery processes. If you want to understand the specific challenges around modern software delivery in enterprise environments

Q: What will I get from reading this book?

A: A better idea of your teams’ challenges. A closer understanding of what needs to happen to improve delivery and practical ways to enable them to move forward to reduce technical debt and improve the flow of feature delivery.

Q: What is the format of this book?

A: It will be an e-book.

Q: How much commitment will it take from me?

A: The course is taught in 3, three-hour sessions usually over three weeks. There will be a chance to ask questions, collaborate as a group between sessions on the Slack channel, and have break-out sessions during the course to compare notes with other attendees. There will also be exercises and reading to do between lessons. I’ll also provide a reading list ahead of the course.

Q: What will be covered in the book?

A: Containing three parts, it will cover many techniques, from better CI/CD to effective DevOps, emergent architecture and improving quality, organisational design including Team Topologies and architecting for flow. There will be a reading list that will include some elements of these books.

Q: Who is the author?

A: I have over 25 years of experience building and running enterprise software systems for global banks, retailers and insurers, start-ups and scale-ups and more. I’ve led Agile and DevOps transformations for global insurers, banks and scale-ups. I’m an expert in DevOps tooling, software development and architecture who can provide countless examples of the modern day-to-day challenges in software engineering environments in the context of the latest published learnings and industry best practices.

Q: How much will it cost?


Q: How can I register interest?

A: You can sign up below to stay informed about the book’s availability.

Q: When will this book be available?

A: Aiming for Q2 2024.