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During testing, our software testers reported a NullException error in an application and I was tasked to fix it. I did some investigation, proposed a fix, and sent out a code review to the team. I white box tested my solution by playing around with the application to make sure NullException does not occur any more and possibly something else is not broken either and, to me, it was fine so I sent out the code review. My manager, who is also our lead architect, replied back in an email and told me to avoid sending out code reviews like this and that he will consider this incident in my annual review.

I want to reply and apologize for not white box testing it thoroughly before sending the code review and will do my best in future, but I also say something in my defense. I did perform some white box testing on the application, but he has much more knowledge about the application so he can white box it much better than me. Plus, what is the whole point of performing a code review at all?! We perform a code review so other team members can review our code and find out potential issues with our code so we can fix them before shipping the code to the client, so why is he mad? That's why code reviews exist, right? What do you think?

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closed as off topic by Mark Trapp Sep 2 '11 at 4:59

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But it really isn't a serious issue for us as a community... –  MattyD Sep 2 '11 at 1:24
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Eesh.. Lead architect and manager? Something just sounds fishy there. –  Demian Brecht Sep 2 '11 at 1:31
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It's not clear from your question what the manager's issue was. Did he feel you didn't test the code sufficiently? Or did he feel there were actually issues with the code? –  David Schwartz Sep 2 '11 at 1:54
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Hi BDotA, general workplace issues like getting along with your manager aren't really on-topic here. If there's a way you can focus your question about something more about software development and less about a conflict with your manager, feel free to revise your question and flag for moderator review. –  user8 Sep 2 '11 at 5:01
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@BDoTA: You need to have a sit-down with your manager about company processes. If he refuses, find another job. You've been called on the mat for being ignorant and not on-board with company processes. You must make a good faith effort to learn how the company runs. –  Paul Nathan Sep 2 '11 at 7:24

1 Answer 1

up vote 6 down vote accepted

You could either have conflict with your manager, or let him be the manager. I'd choose the latter.

In the review, I'd ask the manager questions that show you're willing to learn and adapt to the company's policies. Ready to accept any answer the manager has, I'd ask (in order):

"When should I send out code for review?"

"How do I ensure a bug fix is correct and hasn't broken something else?"

"What was the issue with me sending out that piece of code for review?"

This exposes a training gap and shows a desire to learn what the manager considers is the correct way. It shows you want to do what he sees as right. Just take this as your mistake, because it's unlikely the manager will see it another way, and it is just a mistake. You didn't lose clients over this. You might not think he has the best way, but he has a way that works for this company.

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I would not wait for the (annual) review to ask those questions... –  Marjan Venema Sep 2 '11 at 5:55
    
You need to find out what the policy on code reviews is exactly. In my work place I tell my manager when I am ready for a code review and he will schedule it ( 3 days notice is required per our process rules ). Of course I can go to the other members of my team and request they take a quick look at itmy change also. I think your manager had the problem with making it a "formal" code review ( i.e. paper trail ) without his input. It also wierd this single mistake would even be considered at your review unless there are others or a pattern. –  Ramhound Sep 2 '11 at 12:04

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