New Post at AITS: Why #NoEstimates is a Rough Finish for Your IT Career

AITSBloggingAllianceMy newest post for AITS has been published: Why #NoEstimates Is a Rough Finish for Your IT Career. In it, I show what #NoEstimates sounds like to business people, with an example that’s close to home.

As a former programmer, I understand the mindset. But too many people who should know better are suggesting that #NoEstimates alternatives to planning and scheduling are viable. While it might have worked for one or two unusual cases, it is no more generally applicable than low-gravity golf clubs [obscure Apollo program reference].

As always, thanks for taking the time to read my stuff. After nearly six years of blogging, I’ve grown to really appreciate the people who care enough about the profession to stay current by reading. It’s a comfort to know that I ‘m in good company!

New PM Articles for the Week of February 15 – 21

New project management articles published on the web during the week of February 15 – 21. And this week’s video: an all-star jam on Franklin’s Tower.

Must read!

  • Cameron Conaway tells about the culture at FlexJobs, a job site for telecommuting and other non-traditional positions, where the staff lives exactly that style of work.
  • Seth Godin explains how we should talk about our projects. Not in the marketing sense, but in the strategic sense. Fundamentally, all projects are business activities.
  • Michael O’Brochta uses examples from the Flint, Michigan water scandal and the Titanic disaster to argue that ethical behavior contributes to project success.

Established Methods

  • Cesar Abeid interviews former DeLorean Motor Cars executive Barrie Wills on the saga of the most innovative care of the 1980’s. Just over an hour, safe for work.
  • Elizabeth Harrin interviews Lorraine Chapman as part of her series, Inspiring Women in Project Management.
  • Glen Alleman points out the difference between user stories and requirements.
  • Aaron Smith relates the top ten business analysis trends, as identified by TwentyEighty Strategy Execution.
  • Harry Hall explains how to identify project risks using a structured holistic approach.

Agile Methods

  • Johana Rothman delivered a three-part series on getting past command and control management on the way to Agile. Here’s part two and part three.
  • Saad Ali Jan gets philosophical on automating software testing (and what not to automate).
  • Donna Reed lists some of the common methods Agile teams use to measure and communicate progress.

Applied Leadership

  • Ryan Ogilvie explores the Greek discipline of rhetoric, in an effort to improve our ability to persuade and influence.
  • The Clever PM explains the finer points of leading through influence, when managing those above you in the org chart.
  • Martin Webster lists the things strong leaders do in a crisis.
  • Jesse Lynn Stoner explains the greatness of Abraham Lincoln, an ordinary man who saved a nation.
  • Steven Levy extracts lessons learned from the failure of on-line magazines at Yahoo.
  • Art Petty notes three lessons video game designers can teach us about implementing organizational change.
  • Liane Davey tells how to lead your team through the turmoil usually associated with organizational change.
  • Sarah Hood suggest that we deal with the “elephant in the room” head on, rather than let it remain an unspoken fear.
  • Kerry Wills observes that the problem with superheroes is that they need villains to fight. Not productive in a collaborative environment!

Pot Pouri

  • Bernard Marr reports on the Big Data technologies being leveraged to fight the Zika virus.
  • Cal Newport, author of “Deep Work,” proposes an interesting way to limit the type and number of interruptions you agree to accept: the attention charter.
  • Coert Visser calls our attention to recent research which found, “Winning a competition engenders subsequent unrelated unethical behavior.”
  • Maria Popova extracts a lesson on developing resilience found in Seneca’s “Letters from a Stoic.”

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of January 4 – 10

New project management articles published on the web during the week of January 4 – 10. Recommended:

Must read!

  • Bruce Harpham shares part of his reading list from the last year, and urges us to make reading a key part of our professional development program in 2016.
  • Bob Tarne has been reading “Change by Design,” by Tim Brown. He’s found some interesting insights on the nature of constraints: feasibility, viability, and desirability.
  • Gurjeet Singh gives us some background on machine learning: what it is, what it can do, and what we should expect for the next few years.

Established Methods

  • Michel Dion notes that not every project is an IT project, even when they involve software.
  • Deb Schaffer starts every project with the same question: “What does project success look like?”
  • Johanna Rothman questions the value of certifications and credentials in hiring.
  • Steve Olson extracts project management insights from his long experience in contract management.
  • Brad Rach points out a source of risk we might not have considered: the project manager.
  • Nancy Settle-Murphy shares some techniques for establishing a compelling presence in conference calls, where they can’t see your body language.
  • Mario Trentim has prepared a list of questions to ask for those organizations that want to start a PMO.
  • Tim Wasserman looks into the causes and effects of the gap between organizational strategy and executing on that strategy.
  • Cornelius Fichtner interviews Peter Monkhouse on preventing failure by communicating based on how the project fits into the organization strategy. Just 16 minutes, safe for work.

Agile Methods

  • The Clever PM reviews the twelve guiding principles listed in the Agile Manifesto.
  • Jonathan Schneider presents two scenarios for Agile transformation: one based on compliance, and one based on empowering teams in a pilot.
  • John Gilroy interviews Jesse Fewell on how Agile methods are being adopted by U.S. federal government agencies. Just 42 minutes, safe for work.
  • Tom McFarlin recommends a pragmatic approach: don’t over-engineer your solutions.
  • Angela Wick brings a business analyst’s eye to Agile methods.

Applied Leadership

  • Gurpreet Singh presents an interesting metaphor for leadership: The Listening Tree.
  • Mike Clayton tutors us on influence and persuasion, including a list of persuasion tactics from his book, “How to Influence in Any Situation.”
  • Art Petty suggests we start a business revolution – by fighting corporate bureaucracy to eliminate obstacles.
  • Susanne Madsen coaches us on how to handle a demanding workload, by sharing it.
  • Lynda Bourne points out the signs that a project manager is on the path to becoming a great team leader.

Trends and the New Year

Enjoy!