Tuesday, March 22, 2011


It was nice to read two tweets by Richard Bejtlich Today about the importance of having a "second in command":

@taosecurity BNET on "Why you need a second in command." .mil/.gov get this, have "deputy" roles. Agree, if you lead you need help.
@taosecurity Deputies are great for sanity checks, like telling you that you're making a mistake or that you should consider other aspects of an issue.
I can tell from my own experience that having someone you trust as a deputy or second in command is extremely important. I want to emphasize the importance of the "sanity check" role. You need to be sure that your second in command feels comfortable enough to tell when you are doing something he believes is a mistake. It worked for me when I have good friends working for me. They were not working for me only because they were my friends, but they were also some of the professionals I had (and still have) more respect for. The friendship helped reducing the hierarchy thing that would normally people feel uneasy to disagree with the boss, so they were always helping me to see when I could be overlooking something or even doing something too stupid to work.
Get yourself surrounded by good people, and nominate a second in command that knows he/she call bullshit on your face whenever it's necessary. It might save you from yourself someday.

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