When a manager or executive asks you why a feature will take so long or why you're worried about touching part of the code, what do you say? "It's complicated." "That's legacy code and it's hard to modify." "We have a lot of technical debt." Those things are true, but they probably don't really satisfy the bosses. Learn how to quantify your code in specific ways, using static analysis and how to explain it to management in terms they understand, using analogies and business terms.
Erik Dietrich is the founder of DaedTech LLC, programmer, architect, IT management consultant, author, and technologist. You can read from Erik at his blog (http://www.daedtech.com/).