New PM Articles for the Week of February 5 – February 11

New project management articles published on the web during the week of February 5 – 11. And this week’s video: Mike Clayton explains organizational change management, as a complement to project management—we need to be able to work in both areas. 3 minutes, safe for work.

Must read!

  • Scott Galloway makes the case for busting up Big Tech—Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google—the way earlier generations busted up Big Oil, Big Railroads, and AT&T. A long read, upwards of a half hour, but worth your time.
  • Gabriel Weinberg alerts us to the impact that Google and Facebook have on our privacy—76% of websites contain hidden Google trackers. 5 minutes to read.
  • Ben Tarnoff presents the case for and (mostly) against de-regulation of data collection, as advocated by Google, Facebook, and other tech giants. 5 minutes to read.

Established Methods

  • John Goodpasture observes that we may soon be managing project budgets denominated in cryptocurrencies. It’s time to figure out what that means! 2 minutes to read.
  • Dmitriy Nizhebetskiytutors us on creating a project communications plan. 6 minutes to read.
  • Kiron Bondale points out that the Kotter model for leading change benefits from continually injecting a sense of urgency.
  • Richard Paterson does a deep dive on writing a useful test plan, including one unusual observation—you might not need one. 9 minutes to read.
  • Michael Bolton tells us how to report progress on testing, as a story woven of three strands. 5 minutes to read.
  • Brad Egeland reminds of us the variables to account for when planning projects—even if it’s a similar project for the same customer as the last project. 5 minutes to read.

Agile Methods

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from habits of organizations vulnerable to disruption to Jeff Sutherland’s Scrum@Scale Guide to creating a product wall. 3 minutes to scan, 7 outbound links.
  • Pavel Kukhnavets gets deep into the differences between a Scrum daily stand-up and a Kanban daily stand-up. 6 minutes to read.
  • Ramakanth Vallur explains how personas—a generalization of a customer segment— add value to user stories. 3 minutes to read.
  • Henny Portman reviews How to Lead Self-Managing Teams, by Rini van Solingen. 2 minutes to read.
  • Doug Arcuri finds more wisdom in his third read of The Mythical Man-Month: it is important for the team to track decisions made, as close to the code as possible. 7 minutes to read.
  • Roman Pichler describes product leadership as a collaborative pursuit of a chain of shared goals. 5 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Gustavo Razzetti describes the shift from right decisions to safe to try “Perfectionism is the enemy of change.” 5 minutes to read.
  • Leigh Espy follows up on her recent book, listing three critical reasons to run effective meetings. 3 minutes to read.
  • Derek Huether explains key performance indicators, lagging indicators, and leading indicators for product and services teams. 4 minutes to read.
  • Julie Giulioni notes that leaders who are too helpful can leave their staff helpless—or at least stunt their professional growth. 3 minutes to read.

Technology, Techniques, and Human Behavior

  • Bob Tarne has started applying Crew Resource Management techniques, which originated in the airline industry, to help Scrum teams become more effective. 3 minutes to read.
  • Dan Birch and Neal Murray identify some project planning, risk and issue identification, and status reporting analytical opportunities that might benefit from AI. 4 minutes to read.
  • John Felahi expounds on the risks inherent in data management, from ingest through usage. Data integrity should be a big part of our thinking. 3 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Traci Duez interviews Cesar Abeid, team lead at Automattic, the globally distributed company behind WorPress.com, on leading remote teams. Podcast, 52 minutes, safe for work.
  • Craig Brown updates on the Allen Curve—a finding from the 1970s that the further away someone is, the less likely they will initiate communication. 1 minute to read.
  • Stephanie Vozza lists some don’t-dos that could be making your to-do list less effective. 5 minutes to read. Yes, that was a cheap witticism, but admit it—you liked it.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of December 18 – 24

New project management articles published on the web during the week of December 18 – 24. Happy holidays to you and your families and teams! May 2018 be the year that you aspire for it to be, rather than the one you fear it might be. And this week’s video: First Aid Kit sings their homage to Emmylou Harris and Gram Parsons with Emmylou in the audience. Just over five minutes, safe for work.

Must read!

  • Jeff Stibel explains that the brain needs sleep to remove toxic waste by-products. If you go about 200 hours without sleeping you’ll probably die. Take THAT, Warren Zevon! 5 minutes to read.
  • Karen Frances Eng summarizes recent research into the way the enteric nervous system works. As it turns out, we really do think with our gut. 5 minutes to read.
  • Kristen Wong reveals the keys top being a better listener—asking questions and empathy. 5 minutes to read.

Established Methods

  • Drew Davison examines the Canadian federal government payroll replacement project as an example of a huge initiative that didn’t go as well as expected and generated more problems than savings. 10 minutes to read.
  • Jigs Gaton identifies a key learning from the Equifax breach—find the overdue tasks—and then shares a technique for flagging them in MS Project. 7 minutes to read.
  • Kiron Bondale shares a few thoughts on effective processes for risk identification. 2 minutes to read.
  • Mike Clayton lists what he feels are the best project management books, from beginner intros to specialized topics and the really technical stuff. 12 minutes to read.
  • Harold Kerzner makes his predictions for how project management will continue to evolve in 2018. 5 minutes to read.
  • Amy Hamilton looks back at 2017 and ahead to 2018 from the intersection of cybersecurity and project management. 3 minutes to read.

Agile Methods

  • Data ConversionCornelius Fichtner interviews Betsy Stockdale on the life cycle of Agile requirements, writing better user stories and testable acceptance criteria. Podcast, 31 minutes, safe for work.
  • Mike Cohn explains why Agile teams must become comfortable with a degree of uncertainty. “You need an answer, but do you need the answer before starting?” 5 minutes to read.
  • Ringo Thomas interviews Alistair Cockburn on the Heart of Agile, his updated approach to Agile methods. Video, 32 minutes, safe for work.
  • Dave Prior and Derek Huether review two student questions from students who have recently taken a CSM or CSPO course. Video, 20 minutes, safe for work.
  • Bob Martin notes, “The parallels between double-entry accounting and test-driven development deep end Plentiful.” 5 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Mike Griffiths recounts an anecdote that illustrates the need to understand the organizational culture before attempting to introduce changes.
  • Johanna Rothman concludes her series on building an organizational culture on respect and safety. 4 minutes to read.
  • Leigh Espy reminds us that project managers, as much as visionaries and dreamers, change the world. 2 minutes to read.
  • Harry Hall explores three decision-making models and explains why decision management should be part of our project management plan. 3 minutes to read.

Technology, Techniques, and Human Behavior

  • Magnifying Glass ManSuzanne Lucas considers the pros and cons of facial recognition technology in accessing (and securing) corporate data. 3 minutes to read.
  • Jaime Green describes divergent brainstorming, where the goal is quantity, rather than quality. 2 minutes to read.
  • Antonio Uncal applies two key principles from quantum physics to project management: superposition and complementarity. It’s a nerdy metaphor, but it beats that pig-and-chicken Agile meme. 4 minutes to read.
  • Connor Forrest summarizes an editorial from a Homeland Security official that attributes the WannaCry attack earlier this year (and many others going back to 2009) to North Korea. 3 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Priya Sanjeevi Raja identifies useful techniques for managing virtual teams. 6 minutes to read.
  • Matt Plummer notes both the dysfunctional and effective approaches to feeling refreshed after the holiday season. 5 minutes to read.
  • Tiffanie Wen collates the data from job sites and recruiting experts to find the optimal time to search for a new job. 4 minutes to read.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of December 4 – 10

New project management articles published on the web during the week of December 4 – 10. And this week’s video: A funny little “slice of death” on business continuity planning, from the US Department of Homeland Security. Less than 3 minutes, safe for work. And this week’s pictures are from the Oregon Zoo’s winter event, Zoo Lights. That seascape is about 16 feet tall and made entirely of LED lights.

Must read!

  • Johanna Rothman has started an excellent series on how to behave professionally at work, based on Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. Here’s part two. Each 3 – 4 minutes to read.
  • Jacek Materna explains shadow IT—from origins to challenges and opportunities—and why SaaS and the Cloud are driving cultural change in the IT department.
  • Coert Visser shared a diagram of the “motivation continuum,” based on the extent to which autonomy, competence, and relatedness needs are fulfilled. Click on the image to get a clearer view and then study it for a few minutes. Worth the time investment.

Established Methods

  • Phil Buckley points out 7 change management trends that project managers need to be aware of. 6 minutes to read.
  • Bob Tarne describes Nemawashi, a change management technique the starts with relationship building as the path to consensus building. 2 minutes to read.
  • Kiron Bondale extracts lessons on both risk management and ethics from a recent Dilbert strip. 2 minutes to read.
  • Glen Alleman does a deep dive into the difference between open-loop and closed-loop controls. 8 minutes to read.
  • Bruce Benson notes that project schedules must account for a certain amount of “getting things wrong.” 2 minutes to read.

Agile Methods

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his Agile content list, from the origin of the Agile Manifesto to Scrum and Hypothesis-driven Development to using customer feedback. 7 outbound links, a couple of minutes to scan.
  • Mike Griffiths offers some thoughts on next steps in professional development for those of use with the Certified Scrum Master credential. 4 minutes to read.
  • Sriram Narayan posts an FAQ for Product-Mode, as an alternative to organizing work as projects. Before you object to #NoProjects, scan this for 10 minutes.
  • Mike Cohn answers the criticism that Scrum teams meet too often with a simple suggestion: measure before and after. 4 minutes to read.
  • Matteo Tontini reflects on what the rise and fall of Slack use revealed about his collocated team. 5 minutes to read.
  • Michael Dubakov gets controversial: Every new feature either adds debt or creates a placeholder for future debt. And not just technical debt. 4 minutes to read.
  • Tom Cagley tutors us on six important process flow metrics; part 2 is here. Each about 3 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Pawel Brodzinski reflects on autonomy, authority, and lessons learned from the transition to a holocratic model for his company. 3 minutes to read.
  • Nancy Settle-Murphy describes a few techniques that can help us (and our teams) increase our capacity for generating insights. 4 minutes to read.
  • Art Petty explains the power of asking, “Why do you think that?” Especially of yourself. 3 minutes to read.

Technology and Techniques

  • Bob Martin recaps the history of storing information in computers, from punch cards to SSD’s, and asks: what’s the next fundamental improvement? 6 minutes to read.
  • Lucy Kaith recaps Microsoft’s presentation on new features coming in Sharepoint 2019 (which seems like it should be more than 13 months from now). 5 minutes to read.
  • Cari Romm explains how to be just a little bit better at remembering things. 2 minutes to read.
  • Brendan Toner reviews MindGenius 6—a Windows mind mapping product that exports directly to MS Project. 7 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Suzanne Lucas tells us how to create a team when managing remote workers. 5 minutes to read.
  • Lisette Sutherland interviews Theresa Sigillito Hollema on strengthening collaboration across cultures and borders. Podcast, 38 minutes.
  • Seth Godin lists 20 excellent books that might change the way you and your colleagues work—especially if you read them together. Just a minute to read the list, but bookmark it.

Enjoy!