New Article on AITS: Redundancy in the Data Center

AITSBloggingAllianceMy latest article for AITS was published today: Redundancy: You Can Say That Again!

This past summer, there were two very high-profile system outages at Delta Airlines and Southwest Airlines that underscored the need to design for survivability and availability at the enterprise level. This article starts with the “punch lines” from each incident and then explains the role of redundant components and services in the modern data center. I then go on to review best practices in testing and close by bringing up the Cloud as an alternative to the one-size-fits-all corporate data center, especially now that different availability service levels can be acquired as needed for each application.

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

New PM Articles for the Week of November 14 – 20

New project management articles published on the web during the week of November 14 – 20. And this week’s video: a quick tutorial on Yogic Coffee, a breathing exercise designed to wake you up in the event of carbohydrate-induced slumber (for those of us who still eat lunch). Less than three minutes, safe for work, but practice outside the immediate view of your boss.

Must read / view / listen!

  • Eamonn McGuinness gives us a layman’s overview of five neurotransmitters and their impact on our attitudes, health, and productivity.
  • Sanket Pai recommends we encourage gratitude among the people in our project teams. See Eamonn’s article for the scientific reasoning, but it’s Thanksgiving in the US this week, so the timing is right!
  • Benjamin Hardy relates an old parable that demonstrates a basic truth: those who take the initiative, who initiate, will be successful. Agito, ergo sum.

Established Methods

  • Elizabeth Harrin reviews “Stakeholder-led Project Management,” by Louise Worsley.
  • Rich Maltzman interviews Moira Alexander on her new book, “Lead or Lag: Linking Strategic Project Management & Thought Leadership.”
  • Tomas Laurinaviciusinterviews Paymo CEO Jan Lukacs, who opines that the key to project success is appointing the right person as project manager.
  • Dmitriy Nizhebetskiy gets us back to basics and beyond on the risk register. He also provides a sample/ template for download.
  • Harry Hall tutors us on the inputs to the project charter, as described in the PMBOK. Just five minutes, safe for work.
  • Art Petty reflects on lessons learned from managing three risk-filled projects, each of which required hard governance decisions.
  • Nick Pisano argues for a reduction in project information asymmetry, using insights from economics.

Agile Methods

  • Stefan Wolpers posts his weekly round-up of Agile articles, blog posts, and other content.
  • John Goodpasture shares an interesting image of five levels of planning in Agile methods and reflects on how scaling methodologies started to become mainstream.
  • The Clever PM riffs on the phrase, “Humans are hard.”
  • Priya Yannam unpacks the phrase “self-organized teams” to look for characteristics of Agile at work.
  • Joel Bancroft-Connors and his invisible gorilla, Hogarth, make the case for tracking team issues the same way we track deferred technical issues. Call it “team debt.”

Applied Leadership

  • Leigh Espy explores the science behind emotional intelligence and how we can develop our EI skills and apply them to leadership. Insight: TalentSmart found that those with better EI skills earn significantly more.
  • Abhinav Kaiser shows how we can apply emotional intelligence to the PMBOK Guide knowledge areas.
  • Lisette Sutherland shares some tips for working with a team spread across multiple time zones. Just ten minutes, safe for work.
  • Elise Stevens interviews Jenny De Lacy on how to facilitate great meetings. Just 18 minutes, safe for work.

Technology and Techniques

  • David Cotgreave lays out the operating fundamentals you need to establish before you can hope to gain any benefit from new project portfolio management software.
  • Technavio shares their report on the nine leading vendors in the global online project management software market, and twelve to keep an eye on.
  • Priyanka Chakraborty updates us on the state of project portfolio management in 2016.

Working and the Workplace

  • Alison DiNisco reports that women in the tech industry make 94% of what men in the same jobs make.
  • Coert Visser says the research is clear: interruptions reduce the quality of your work.
  • Sara Hutchison tutors us on how to decode recruiter Emails in the modern, LinkedIn Age.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of November 7 – 13

New project management articles published on the web during the week of November 7 – 13. And this week’s video: CEO of Datameer, Stefan Groschupf, talks about how companies like AirBnB, Uber and SpaceX are taking an Agile, evolutionary approach to data analytics. Just 2 minutes, safe for work.

Must read / view / listen!

  • Michael Hyatt argues that starting your day by eating a frog can help fight procrastination, but starting with the easiest task and working to the most difficult builds confidence.
  • Glen Alleman outlines the Agile Canon, as presented by Daniel R. Greening. This is an excellent depiction of Agile principles in five groups.
  • Jiwat Ram makes the case for compliance projects as strategic, “… as non-compliance could lead to far-reaching implications for business survival and continuity management.”

Established Methods

  • Elizabeth Harrin details the five skills you need to manage complex projects. She also explains the difference between difficult and hard projects.
  • Harry Hall covers the basics of requirements management.
  • Momoko McCartney and Edward Hun describe the business analysis operating model, and why you need one.
  • Jason Morio invokes a recent study from Appleseed Partners which found that collaboration is impeded by using multiple tools, rather than relying on One Source of Truth.
  • Anna Murray identifies four common mistakes organizations make in managing software development, and how to prevent them.

Agile Methods

  • Stefan Wolpers posts his weekly round-up of Agile articles, blog posts, and other content.
  • Danni Friedland explains how to collect actionable UX design data by conducting usability testing.
  • Mike Griffiths tutors us on adding risk management to Agile methods.
  • Dave Prior interviews Troy Magennis on the use of his forecasting tools, which are based on team performance. Just 23 minutes, safe for work.
  • Anand Kedia outlines continuous integration and continuous delivery, shows the benefits of each, and tells how they fit together.
  • Craig Smith interviews Mark Pedersen on the changing role of the tester in ensuring software quality. Just 37 minutes, safe for work.
  • Neil Potter points out that Scrum teams and coaches need to master the “hard skills” of managing software development.

Applied Leadership

  • Cornelius Fichtner interviews Kristine Hayes Munson on influencing without authority. Just 30 minutes, safe for work.
  • Michael Lopp describes the effective staff meeting, and when to not bother having it.
  • Bertrand Duperrin puts the gap between the digital employee (and applicant) and the employer in context.

Technology and Techniques

  • Jamie Hale gives a high-level explanation of the language of statistics and why correlation matters even when it isn’t indicative of causation.
  • Matthew Squair provides a lesson (in his Screwtape persona) explaining how the concept of mitigation can be used to help paper over dangerous decisions.
  • Mark Samuels summarizes recommendation from Gartner that should impact the way we approach Big Data projects.
  • Aaron Smith summarizes the top ten tech trends for 2017, as identified by Gartner.

Working and the Workplace

  • Lisette Sutherland interview Corey Grusdan of SoFetch about what it takes to work remotely. Just 24 minutes, safe for work.
  • Suzanne Lucas reminds us to take our annual vacation before the year runs out.
  • Jory MacKay suggests ways to make your workspace work better for you.

Enjoy!