Instructions for coddling the antisocial genius in the next cubicleCoders can be hard to get along with because they are geniuses with no time for people who do not help them solve the magnificent problems that occupy their magnificent minds. Or so explains one such a programmer on his blog, Learning Lisp. He writes that programmers need to be "steered" rather than "managed." They also need to be edited. Here's the post, cut from 2,200 words to just its most entertaining bits, below.
People like this are not sick. Most people really never think. Most people just go to work, do the same old thing, and go home. Our programmer can’t *stop* thinking. Our programmer looks at social situations and doesn’t see how they connect to his current stable of pet projects. This guy operates on raw intuition. He never stops thinking about the big picture. Clean up your rhetoric a little. Acknowledge that the guy has a point. Be up front and clear or you’re nothing but a used car salesman to him. People have to communicate a finite self-contained need. He needs a chance to show off his “super powers." Handing some micromanager authority over his to-do list is dangerous: there are more dependencies and variables than what anyone else will see or care about, but that are critically important to our programmer/”genius”. In an ideal world, he’d have “June Cleaver” at home to make sure he has dressed himself properly. He’d have an accountant and a secretary. At work, he’d be steered, not “managed”. Once a year, he’d have the chance to work on a two-month project that he prototypes and architects himself where he has the chance to be appreciated as the “genius” that he is.