New PM Articles for the Week of October 23 – 29

New project management articles published on the web during the week of October 23 – 29. Note that Daylight Savings Time ended in the UK and much of Europe on October 28, but will drag on for another week in North and Central America. And this week’s video: Destiny Cross makes the theme music from “The Munsters” haunting in a way you never expected. 8 minutes, safe for work.

Must read (or Listen)!

  • David Clinton tutors us on the vocabulary and concepts of high-availability server networks. Absolutely the best explanation I’ve read in years—highly recommended! 9 minutes to read.
  • Johanna Rothman takes a principled stand against harassment and abuse of power. “When the people suffer, the product suffers. It suffers in development and it suffers in release.” 3 minutes to read.
  • Adam Shostack considers the question: what do we need to do to create software that lasts as long as the new refrigerator that will connect to your network? The internet of things will change the timescale of software product life cycles. 3 minutes to read.

Established Methods

  • Michael Clayton curates a list of project management surveys and reports, from a variety of sources. 21 outbound links, 7 minutes to read.
  • Michel Dion observes that the most common failure mode for labor-intensive projects is insufficient resources, and that’s usually by design. 4 minutes to read.
  • Joe Wynne identifies several tactics to resolve resource constraints when managing a portfolio of projects (and BAU). 3 minutes to read.
  • Henny Portman links us to ten “canvas” models for structuring, explaining, and summarizing complex collections of information. Just a minute to scan, 10 outbound links.
  • Harry Hall shares eight tips designed to help you answer difficult questions during presentations. 2 minutes to read.
  • Jason Westland has compiled a list of 15(!) free project management training videos, by Jennifer Bridges, Susan Madsen, and Devin Deen.

Agile Methods

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from matching Agile approach with context to lessons learned from electoral politics to the Third Scrum Wave. You thought Scrum was a particle? 7 outbound links, 2 minutes to scan.
  • Soma Bhattacharya describes five different kinds of Scrum Masters, based on what there were doing before they assumed the role. Insightful and thought-provoking! 2 minutes to read.
  • Peter Pito compares Kanban and the Theory of Constraints, beginning with their origins and intended purposes. 6 minutes to read.
  • John Yorke explains Little’s Law and how it applies to work in progress limits, but not velocity. 2 minutes to read.
  • Dave Prior interviews Declan Whelan on how the definition of technical debt has evolved to something more akin to technical health. Podcast, 37 minutes.
  • Dan Mirabella points out three advantages of an Agile release plan. 3 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Elizabeth Harrin tells us how to manage a team member with a negative attitude. 5 minutes to read.
  • Scott Berkun answers the question: why do so many managers have poor people skills? 4 minutes to read.
  • Vicki Wrona notes that organizations that recognize and reward fire-fighting need to be on the lookout for poor planners and procrastinators. You know: arsonists. 3 minutes to read.
  • Roopak Jain provides an Agile practitioner’s view of the Learning Organization, as described by Peter Senge.

Technology, Techniques, and Human Behavior

  • Kim Brushaber explains how to get started on complying with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Webinar, just over an hour.
  • Cathy Nolan tutors us on Privacy Impact Assessments, an analysis of how personally identifiable information (PII) is collected, used, shared, and maintained. 3 minutes to read.
  • Elyse Bogacz notes key factors and decision points in the design process for reports. Data visualization is not just in the eye of the beholder! 5 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Leigh Espy lists 20 behaviors that we should develop as assertive communication skills to gain confidence and respect. Just over 10 minutes to read.
  • Geoff Crane presents scientific evidence that as stress accumulates, the body anticipates additional stress. Not a good cycle—we need to break it to help others deal with their stress. 4 minutes to read.
  • Suzanne Lucas triumphantly tells us why we need to tell rude people to knock it off—because it works! 4 minutes to read, a lifetime to confront all the jerks.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of October 16 – 22

New project management articles published on the web during the week of October 16 – 22. And this week’s video: motivational psychologist Edward Deci explains self-determination theory, including autonomous motivation, controlled motivation, and basic psychological needs at a high level. Just 8 minutes, safe for work.

Must read!

  • Michael Karnanaprakorn, CEO and founder of Skillshare, describes his annual Think Week, which he adopted from Bill Gates. Even a Think Weekend is a good thing. 3 minutes to read.
  • Art Petty says we can improve the quality of our group decisions by analyzing and stress testing our assumptions, using techniques like red teaming, fracking, and mapping. 5 minutes to read.
  • Amber Lee Dennis points out the hidden opportunity in compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR): transforming our existing records to a more actionable form. 5 minutes to read.

Established Methods

  • Kiron Bondale defends one of the tools removed in the PMBOK 6th Edition—the Critical Chain Method. 2 minutes to read.
  • Barry Hodge notes the benefits of working as a virtual project manager and how to get started. I’ve been doing it for years, and would never go back to a commute. 3 minutes to read.
  • Glen Alleman debunks the silly claim that process reduces agility. Who keeps coming up with this nonsense, anyway? 2 minutes to read.
  • Elizabeth Harrin reviews Bridging the Project Management Competency Gap, by Rich Maltzman and Loredana Abramo. 3 minutes to read.
  • Henny Portman reviews Johanna Rothman’s new book, Manage Your Project Portfolio—2nd Edition. 4 minutes to read.
  • Amy Hamilton tutors us on stakeholder identification. 3 minutes to read, plus a 4-minute roadside video, safe for work.
  • Mike Clayton explains the concepts of Objectives and Key Results in describing project deliverables. Just 5 minutes, safe for work.

Agile Methods

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from team building without rock stars to psychological safety to why SAFe might be just command and control thinking. 3 minutes to scan, 7 outbound links.
  • David Sabine dissects Jeff Sutherland’s occasional claim that Scrum breaks the Iron Triangle. 3 minutes to read.
  • Jen Bunk interviews Johanna Rothman on how she got started, early microcomputer tech, and why project problems are really people problems. 45 minutes, safe for work.
  • Travis Birch explains Kanban in just under a minute.
  • Roopak Jain compares estimating using story points with estimating hours of effort. 3 minutes to read.
  • John Yorke describes his new Kanban game, Motor City. You, too, can be a titan of table-top industry! 2 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Bertrand Duperrin considers the four generations now in the workforce and how to manage for retention. 2 minutes to read.
  • Daniel Lock identifies four actionable triggers of intrinsic motivation. 4 minutes to read.
  • Dmitriy Nizhebetskiy gives us a few tools to enable leading successfully without positional authority. 5 minutes to read.

Technology, Techniques, and Human Behavior

  • Connor Forrest reports on the KRACK vulnerability that will affect nearly every Wifi network and device. 2 minutes to read.
  • Michelle Knight provides concise, clear definitions of taxonomy, ontology, and metadata. Each a minute or so to read.
  • Suraj Chatrath points out the potential role of a business analyst in data science applications. 4 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Brendan Toner begins a series of articles summarizing the key features of available day planner apps. If you haven’t read his past articles, this is definitely his area of expertise. 5 minutes to read.
  • Lew Sauder breaks down the key elements of being proactive—planning ahead, being organized, prioritizing, and acting quickly. 3 minutes to read.
  • Lisette Sutherland shares some ideas for conducting a hybrid meeting—those with a mix of remote and in-person attendees. 11 minutes, safe for work.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of October 9 – 15

New project management articles published on the web during the week of October 9 – 15. And this week’s video: Caitria and Morgan O’Neill explain how they became disaster recovery project managers on the day their hometown (including their home) was hit by a tornado. 9 minutes, safe for work. #MillennialsSteppingUp

Must read!

  • Ben Evans does a generational study of dominant tech firms and finds that GAFA (Google, Apple, Facebook, and Amazon) are 3X the scale of Wintel. 5 minutes to read.
  • Eshe Nelson summarizes the work of Nobel Prize winner Richard Thaler, who examines the flaws and biases in human nature that drive us to make bad decisions. 5 minutes to read.
  • Nir Eyal and Lakshmi Mani focus on confirmation bias—how it works inside your brain, and how to deal with it when trying to function in the real world. 5 minutes to read.

Established Methods

  • Elizabeth Harrin interviews Jonathan Clay, PMI UK’s incoming president on the upcoming Synergy conference and what’s next for the chapter. 5 minutes to read.
  • Mike Clayton answers the rhetorical question: should I get a project management qualification? 10 minutes to read, 7 outbound links.
  • Dmitriy Nizhebetskiy tutors us on project quality assurance. 6 minutes to read.
  • Kiron Bondale suggests that, in addition to defining project success factors, we should define what would constitute a project failure.
  • Kerry Wills lists five guiding principles for an agile portfolio. 2 minutes to read.
  • Harry Hall lists seven project management influencers to watch. Thanks for including me in such esteemed company! 3 minutes to read.

Agile Methods

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of all things Agile, from scaling Spotify to uncontrollable technical debt to cost of delay. 3 minutes to scan, 9 outbound links.
  • John Yorke’s new Kanban training board game is almost ready for general distribution, but he’s looking for feedback. Seems really interesting. 3 minutes to read.
  • Johanna Rothman explores minimalism—how little can we do and yet still be effective? Just over a minute to read.
  • Shane Billings articulates the type of “deviations” needed to adapt a plan (connect the moving dots) in a fast-changing environment.
  • Jesse Fewell calls out the haters—“Hate is not an Agile value.” Attack the problem, not the person. 4 minutes to read the text, 5 minutes for the podcast. Safe for work.
  • Eli Woolery and Aarron Walter interview Jake Knapp, father of the design sprint and author of Sprint. 2 minutes to read the article, 57 minutes for the podcast.

Applied Leadership

  • John Goodpasture notes that any activity at scale requires strangers to work together effectively. Which requires things like currency, bureaucracy, and the rule of law. 2 minutes to read.
  • Art Petty maps out the distinctions between a team and a group. Yes, groups are useful, too. 4 minutes to read.
  • Kat Boogaard shares some legitimate tactics for becoming a thought leader. Yes, thought leaders are leaders. 3 minutes to read.

Technology, Techniques, and Human Behavior

  • Ryan Ogilvie gives us a detailed plan for improving business support. 7 minutes to read.
  • The Nuvro blog has a new article on how to create a customer success team. 5 minutes to read.
  • Vaibhav Aparimit begins a series on the fundamentals of system design with definitions of reliability more accurately resilience), scalability, and maintainability. 2 minutes to read.
  • Karik Patel explains augmented analytics and tells us why it matters. 3 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Michael Lopp describes that moment when the Old Guard and the New Guard actually come together for the first time—in a moment of crisis. 5 minutes to read.
  • Suzanne Lucas explains how to keep working when you’re depressed (and shares some insights into managing depressed people). 5 minutes to read.
  • Seth Godin: “Sonderis defined as that moment when you realize that everyone around you has an internal life as rich and as conflicted as yours.” 1 minute to read.

Enjoy!