It’s important to think like a journalist when writing status reports: be clear, concise, and engage the reader by creating a narrative. Tell a story that the reader wants to finish. But not everything in your status report should be news—you also need to mix in information, showing trends and data in a digestible format. The goal should be to help your stakeholders have a better understanding of the work planned, completed, and in progress so they can make better decisions and help to champion the project.
As always, thanks for taking the time to read my stuff.
New project management articles published on the web during the week of January 22 – 28. And this week’s video: Harry Hall explains the concept of risk velocity—the relative amount of time you have until an identified risk manifests as an issue—and how to include it in your qualitative risk assessment. 4 minutes, safe for work.
Must read (or Listen)!
Connor Forrest describes Amazon’s new retail artificial intelligence technology, called Just Walk Out. It’s the brains behind Amazon Go—a convenience store with no checkout line. 3 minutes to read.
Devin Coldewey reports on the surveillance technology behind Amazon Go. 6 minutes to read.
Dan Smiljanic reveals the results of Binfire’s analysis of the status of project managers and the profession, with global statistics and a survey of 1080 PM’s in the USA, UK, Europe, Israel, India, and Japan. 7 minutes to read and very enlightening.
Glen Alleman tutors us on physical percent complete—also called, “Are we done yet?” in the context of an integrated master plan and integrated master schedule. 8 minutes to read.
John Goodpasture answers a key criticism of Monte Carlo simulations: you don’t really know what distribution should apply. 3 minutes to read.
New project management articles published on the web during the week of January 1 – 7. And this week’s video: Thomas Frank recaps five lessons from “The Power of Habit,” by Charles Duhhig. Five minutes, safe for work.
Must read (or Listen)!
Danny Vinik gets us up to speed on alternative work arrangements. It’s more than just the gig economy: from 2005 through 2015, all net job growth in the American economy was in contingent jobs. 18 minutes to read.
Aarian Marshall reports that the development of self-driving cars has hit a technical wall—namely, safely coexisting with humans on the same road. 7 minutes to read.
Linky van der Merwe gives us a primer on corporate social responsibility. Two minutes to read, plus an extensive infographic.
Elizabeth Harrin asked 32 project management thought leaders how to make 2018 a successful year for our projects. She ended up with a long article (20 minutes to read) and an e-book.
Mike Clayton contemplates developing our professional skills in 2018. 2 minutes to read.
Brad Egeland identifies five key trends we’ll see develop in 2018 and beyond. 4 minutes to read.
Ryan Hewitt shares his approach to planning for a workshop—he calls it the Seven P’s. 4 minutes to read.
Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from the State of Scrum to highly progressive workplaces to designing a bulletproof product strategy. 9 outbound links, four minutes to browse.
Johanna Rothman poses three questions to ask before estimating the cost of an Agile program. 6 minutes to read.
Glen Alleman casts a critical eye on the notion of incremental delivery. Sometimes, the customer is looking for more than just a collection of user stories. 3 minutes to read.
Jez Halford observes a key reason why software is often bad at whatever it was supposed to do: unconscious assumptions. 2 minutes to read.
Jesse Fewell notes the frequent disconnect between what we do and why we do it. Video, about 5 minutes.
Tim Runcie introduces us to some of the new Agile capabilities in MS Project. 6 minutes to read.
Henny Portman reviews Dan Miller’s new book, Don’t Spook the Herd! How to get your agile projects running smoothly. 3 minutes to read.
Art Petty tells us we need to embrace—even love—challenging conversations. They all have a “use by” date. 4 minutes to read.
Michael Lopp shares three lessons gained from reflection: act last, read the room, and taste the soup. Code words for good advice. 6 minutes to read.
Kiron Bondale tells a few stories of customer service—good and not so good. Passing the buck is a recipe for not good. 4 minutes to read.
Gina Abudi notes that difficult stakeholders are not always behaving irrationally. 2 minutes to read.
Technology, Techniques, and Human Behavior
Tom Merritt reports on the top 5 technology trends to watch in 2018. Video, just under 2 minutes.
Neil Barton makes four data technology adoption predictions for 2018. 3 minutes to read.
Javier Augusto explains why people are the most important part of the innovation process. 8 minutes to read.
Bruce Benson reflects on the A-teams and the B-teams, noting that the important ideas don’t usually come from the ones you might expect. 2 minutes to read.
Working and the Workplace
Lisette Sutherland curates a massive list of resources and tools for remote workers. How massive? Nearly 200 entries.
Will Fanguy shares a ten-step plan for eliminating distractions when working remotely. 6 minutes to read.
Ciara McDonnell shares an infographic on managing your energy. 2 minutes to read.