New Post at AITS on Risk Tolerance

Risky Baby BusinessAs part of my continuing association with the site, I contributed an article on risk tolerance which was just published on Friday. The article includes a rubric for choosing among alternative risk responses, and some questions to ask at the beginning of a project that can help gauge the organization’s risk tolerance. The original title was a bit pedestrian, so editor John Friscia cranked it up to something a little more click-worthy. If you have some feedback, comments, or alternative thoughts on the subject, leave a comment there. If you have suggestions for future articles, leave a comment here.

Stop Lying to Yourself: How to Gauge Risk Tolerance

As always, thanks for your consideration, for your ideas, and for pointing out the flaws in my work.

I’m Presenting at the CAMPIT Portfolio and Program Management Conference


I’ve been invited to present at the CAMP IT Portfolio / Program Management Conference to be conducted in Las Vegas, June 18 – 19, 2015. I’ll be presenting on our portfolio management approach and lessons learned from my time at MGM Resorts International. When I joined, we had 23 various properties, each with it’s own HR,Payroll, and timekeeping solution. My assignment was to merge them, so we could eventually implement a new ERP.

If you plan to attend, let me know. I’ll load up my Starbucks card and treat whoever shows up and mentions that you read about the event on my blog.


New PM Articles for the Week of March 16 – 22

Green BalloonNew project management articles published on the web during the week of March 16 – 22. We give you a high-level view so you can read what interests you. Recommended:

Must read!

  • Mike Griffiths rounds up a number of high-profile projects from the last few decades, and considers whether they or not they were successful.
  • Jason Bloomberg gives us an overview of cognitive computing, from the perspective of how it can deliver value.
  • Tony Adams quotes Friedrich Neitzsche on why people don’t want to hear the truth, and explains how to deliver bad news, anyway.

PM Best Practices

  • Elizabeth Harrin interviews Michel Dion on his new book, “The Leadership Toolbox for Project Managers.”
  • Rich Maltzman notes the growing interest in sustainability as a project success metric.
  • Bruce Harpham shares a few thoughts (and some research) on improving quality.
  • Nick Pisano continues our dialog on mining information from mountains of project management data, with a look at the influence of software packages on opinions.
  • Brad Egeland has some thoughts on what you need to be successful as a remote project manager.
  • Jerry Johns takes an applied physics approach to keeping his project in balance.
  • Joel Bancroft-Connors and his invisible gorilla, Hogarth, expound on the virtues of looking in the direction we want to go.
  • Steven Levy uses a picture of a man on a bicycle pursued by bear as a jumping-off point for a rumination on project management as a team sport.
  • Michel Dion provides a tutorial on how to talk with senior management.
  • Henny Portman reviews a new book by Hannan, Müller, and Robinson, “The CIO’s Guide to Breakthrough Project Portfolio Performance.”
  • Ryan Ogilvie gets practical, with customer service survey questions that need fine-tuning.

Agile Methods

  • Glen Alleman analyzes Jim Benson’s five estimating pathologies and suggests some corrective actions.
  • Neil Killick recaps the five estimating pathologies listed by Jim Benson, and adds a fifth – accepting the request without asking any questions.
  • Mahfoud Amiour prroposes a new Agile metric: SPOC, or story point cost.

 Soft Skills

  • Hendrie Weisinger continues his series of articles based on his new book, “Performing Under Pressure,” with a look at the positive effects of enthusiasm.
  • Michael Smith on hiring coders: “85% of a programmer’s success is due to human factors rather than pure technical skills.”
  • Suzanne Lucas notes that leaders set the pace with their example, and by communicating clear expectations.
  • Dan Furlong explores the elusive notion of “presence,” and shows why it’s important.
  • Sandy Geroux explains the difference between being accountable and taking ownership.

Podcasts and Videos

  • Cornelius Fichtner interviews Doug Hong on his seven free tutorials for managing projects with Microsoft Excel. Just 27 minutes, safe for work, and highly recommended.
  • Jacob Morgan interviews Rich Carpenter on the intersection of the industrial internet, data science, and the future of work. One hour, safe for work.
  • Renee and Craig interview Henrik Kniberg at Scum Australia, where he delivered the keynote. Just 40 minutes, safe for work.