New Post at MPUG: Adding a Current Tasks Flag to MS Project

My latest article for MPUG was published today: Adding a current tasks flag to MS Project.

It is important to keep your project team focused on current and near-term tasks. If you want to send out a weekly update to your project team, showing which tasks are active but incomplete, or scheduled to start in the next week, it would help to have a flag that automatically identifies those tasks for you. This article explains how to add it to your MS Project plan.

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

New PM Articles for the Week of May 21 – 27

New project management articles published on the web during the week of May 21 – 27. And this week’s video: an ancient performance of “Chateau Lafitte ’59 Boogie” by Foghat, with the late Lonesome Dave Peverett reminding us how it was done before lip-synching and backup dancers. 8 minutes, safe for work, but put the headphones on and crank it up.

Must read!

  • David Harding summarizes current trends in mergers and acquisitions and finds that we are returning to successful models from the early 20th 4 minutes to read.
  • Quinn Norton reports on the Efail exploit and then goes deep into history to explain why Email is a non-fixable problem with no clear owner. 10 minutes to read.
  • John Harris notes that most of the new product hype coming from the Big Tech firms is for … well, useless crap. Do you really need a digital assistant to make your phone calls? 5 minutes to read.

Established Methods

  • Leigh Espy interviews project manager and blogger Dmitriy Nizhebetskiy on how he went from naval officer candidate to software development project manager and what he learned along the way. 8 minutes to read.
  • Susanne Madsen reviews three well-known projects that ran over budget and schedule and had rough initial roll-outs but are today deemed iconic works. 5 minutes to read.
  • Mike Clayton explain strategic project definition. Video, 3 minutes, safe for work.
  • Vivien Gold reminds us of some of the elements to include in a project budget. 4 minutes to read.
  • Glenn Alleman tutors us on cost, price, and value and how they are used in business decision making. 5 minutes to read.
  • Nick Pisano begins a series on integrated program management elements. This one is on costs—development, management, and product lifecycle—and why we’re not capturing all of them. 10 minutes to read.

Agile Methods

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from working for Scrum-clueless management to mental models to guerilla user testing. 7 outbound links, 3 minutes to scan.
  • Neil Killick explores alternatives to story points in making delivery estimates. 5 minutes to read.
  • John Cutler invokes Deming in pointing out that high WIP, resulting from crappy management systems, generates more problems than actual people. 4 minutes to read.
  • Eric Weiss observes that Scrum is not necessarily agile, and there are several ways to “do” Scrum counter-productively. 9 minutes to read.
  • Tim Runcie explains the newest Agile features of MS Project. 10 minutes to read.
  • Kiron Bondale makes the case for using Gantt charts and other project management tools even in projects using Agile or adaptive methods. 2 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Alexander Maasik curates his weekly list of leadership articles, from what people care about to the value of expertise to welcoming new people. 5 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
  • David Dye explores what we can do by simply changing the question. Whole new answers appear. 3 minutes to read.
  • Dan Rockwell explains proactive delegation, because “Desperation is a lousy context for delegation.” 2 minutes to read.

Technology, Techniques, and Human Behavior

  • Greg Satell notes that you can’t commercialize a scientific discovery—first you have to create a product that incorporates it. And that can be harder than the science. 5 minutes to read.
  • Youyou Zhou reports on a scary Amazon Alexa “fail” that should make you wonder how fully you can test devices that interpret speech. 3 minutes to read.
  • Albert Gareev talks about how to find the starting point in business intelligence testing. 5 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Elizabeth Harrin shares a massive infographic on the Art and Science of Networking. Maybe 6 or 7 minutes to read, but very non-linear. Take your time.
  • Jack White (not the musician) identifies five “routines” that justify procrastination and hinder achieving goals. 4 minutes to read.
  • LaRae Quy recounts her experience at the FBI Academy in explaining how to build a strong mind. 5 minutes to read.
  • Cassandra Leung explains her “rabbit poop” model for learning. 4 minutes, but do not read this over certain breakfast cereals.


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