New Post at AITS: Risk Response Strategies Transfer and Avoid

My latest article for AITS was published today: Risk Response Strategies: Transfer and Avoid.

While most project managers and teams understand the Mitigate and Accept risk response strategies, few in IT really understand the Transfer and Avoid strategies. I use the example of a mouse and a trap to illustrate how all four can be considered when assessing a risk for the best response. Note that for any risk, Accept is the default strategy, unless you take specific steps to reduce the likelihood or impact of the risk event.

As always, thanks for taking the time to read my stuff.

New PM Articles for the Week of September 18 – 24

New project management articles published on the web during the week of September 18 – 24. And this week’s video: two Scottish men try to communicate with a voice-activated elevator. My Taiwan-born wife laughed so hard I thought she’d require CPR. Just under 4 minutes, more-or-less safe for work.

Must read!

  • Derek Beres explains how reading changes your brain, increasing intelligence and empathy. Which is why you read these weekly round-ups, right? 5 minutes to read, four short videos embedded.
  • Rich Maltzman and Dave Shirley report on the growth of Sustainable and Responsible Investment, using the Seychelles as an example. Deals like this always create new projects. 4 minutes to read.
  • John Goodpasture opines on the relationship between precision and accuracy and two schools of practice—one of objectivity and one of subjectivity. 2 minutes to read.

Established Methods

  • Harry Hall tells how to conduct a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis and apply the findings to your risk management activities. 2 minutes to read.
  • PMI released two new in-depth reports—one on achieving agility (32 pages) and one on the drivers of agility (16 pages). Note that “Agile” and agility are not the same thing.
  • Michelle Symonds explains why the “triple constraint” ignores all other constraints and points out some of the others we will encounter. 4 minutes to read, one embedded video.
  • Laura Paton debunks five myths about PMI’s business analysis certification. Laura had key roles in developing both the PMI standard for business analysis and the BABOK Guide. 7 minutes to read.
  • Cheryl Texiera gets down to the gritty details of creating consistent documentation for your project. 3 minutes to read.
  • Chris Matts begins a series describing the three levels of metric maturity. 2 minutes to read.

Agile Methods

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from the roles of change (agitate, innovate, orchestrate) to systems thinking, to the case for teams to self-select. 11 outbound links, 3 minutes to scan.
  • Mike Cohn explores the two ways in which a team can add detail to a user story: splitting and adding acceptance criteria. 6 minutes to read.
  • John Cutler presents some background on the story points debate and then suggests some alternative metrics. 4 minutes to read.
  • Tamás Török presents a scientific approach to prioritizing software development requirements. 4 minutes to read.
  • David Vicentin explains how Six Sigma projects can apply Agile techniques and values. 2 minutes to read.
  • Arthur Moore presents the Large-Scale Scrum (LeSS) notion of the perfect definition of done. 3 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Harry McCracken reports on the success of Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella in changing the culture at Microsoft, resulting in a dazzling improvement in their prospects. 20 minutes to read.
  • Robert Kaiser, Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, and Derek Lusk guide us in learning to play office politics ethically and effectively. 5 minutes to read.
  • Art Petty reminds us that while results certainly matter, leaders need to get them sustainably to be effective. 4 minutes to read.
  • Christopher Chabris provides brief reviews of four recent books on different aspects of decision-making, behavior, and influence, authored by researchers in the fields. 4 minutes to read.

Technology, Techniques, and Human Behavior

  • Tom Warren reports that the forces of evil managed to hide botnet malware in the CCleaner app that has been downloaded more than 2 billion times. 2 minutes to read.
  • Dan Patterson and Emily Wilson discuss the details of the Equifax breach, including the revelation that the company directed victims to a phishing website for support. Incredible … 7 minutes, safe for work.
  • Febin John James reveals that artificial intelligence can be used to guess passwords because humans are predictable. But, you knew that. 3 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Geoff Crane identifies four distinct skills, based on the trait model of emotional intelligence, that will allow us to thrive in the “gig economy.” 4 minutes to read.
  • Leigh Espy coaches us on preparing for project management behavioral interview questions and even shares a list of 40 samples. 10 minutes to read.
  • Kailash Awati notes that “no one actually experiences time as it is depicted in a timeline.” The level of engagement makes time seem to go faster or slower. 6 minutes to read, although it might seem like 2 or 3.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of September 11 – 17

New project management articles published on the web during the week of September 11 – 17. And this week’s video: the folks at MePIN provide a little background on the GDPR, if it’s not already on your radar. Just 2 minutes, safe for work.

Must read (or Listen)!

  • Lily Hay Newman gives us some background on the Social Security number—why we still use it for so many things and what the Equifax breach might mean for our American identity crisis. 5 minutes to read.
  • Russell Brandom diagnoses the larger problem: our entire credit bureau system, which relies on data that is no longer private, is irretrievably broken. 4 minutes to read.
  • Bertrand Duperrin notes measures of a lack of business maturity in data privacy and security practices, even with the General Data Protection Regulation becoming effective in May 2018. 3 minutes to read.

Established Methods

  • Harry Hall explains why those who already have their PMP should read the PMBOK 6th edition. 2 minutes to read, and I second the motion.
  • Elizabeth Harrin reviews The Project Manager’s Little Book of Cheats, by Beth Spriggs. “I’ve covered it in sticky notes.” 2 minutes to read.
  • Johnny Beirne interviews Mike Clayton on the importance of project definition. Podcast, 28 minutes.
  • Ron Rosenhead notes the potential value in a selection process for project sponsors. 2 minutes to read.
  • Cheryl Texeira walks us through planning a project with an unrealistic deadline. 3 minutes to read.

Agile Methods

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list, from Agile metrics to scaling Agile, to the existential question: Is Agile Doomed? 11 outbound links, 3 minutes to scan.
  • Mike Cohn maps out the most productive way for programmers and testers to collaborate. 7 minutes to read.
  • Johanna Rothman continues her series on alternatives for Agile and Lean road mapping, describing the Product Value Team. 3 minutes to read.
  • Mishkin Berteig lists three alternatives to Scrum and identifies how well each fits IT project work. 8 minutes to read.
  • Bart Gerardi describes the benefits of an Agile Center of Excellence as opposed to a more common Project Management Office. 7 minutes to read.
  • Scott Sehlhorst describes an approach for progressively elaborating the team’s understanding and behavior model of the users. 6 minutes to read.
  • Jason Moccia tutors us on design sprints, which use Scrum to refine the requirements and design before beginning development. WaterScrum? Uh, no. 7 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Uri Galimidi tells an anecdote about a manager who failed to hear what he was being told and offers some thoughts on developing your listening ability. 4 minutes to read.
  • Art Petty describes the corporate Zombie Apocalypse and offers some head-shots to deal with the causes. 3 minutes to read.
  • Ted Bauer eviscerates the “high achiever” myth, with acerbic wit, foul language, and several anecdotes. 6 minutes to read.
  • Suzanne Lucas gives us the executive micro-summary of a study conducted by an all-women team at BCG on what is helping women succeed and what is not. 3 minutes to read.

Technology, Techniques, and Human Behavior

  • Ryan Ogilvie shows how to sell service improvement to decision makers as a value-add. 3 minutes to read.
  • Steven Levy profiles the team at CTRL-Labs and the work they’re doing on a brain-machine interface that might soon be implemented as a watchband. 15 minutes to read, but absolutely worth it.
  • John Goodpasture links Oren Etzioni’s rules for AI systems with Isaac Asimov’s laws of robotics for an interesting baseline of constraints. 2 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Mike Griffiths expands on Dianna Larson’s recent keynote speech, “Knowledge work is learning work.” 4 minutes to read.
  • Adam Schwartz, founder and CEO of Articulate, tells us why (and how) remote work scales. 5 minutes to read.
  • Conner Forrest reports on a recent survey by Softchoice: 74% of office workers would change jobs to firms that supported working from home. 2 minutes to read.

Enjoy!