New PM Articles for the Week of October 8 – 14

New project management articles published on the web during the week of October 8 – 14. And this week’s video: Celeste Headlee’s TEDx talk on how to have a good conversation, even with people you profoundly disagree with. 12 minutes, safe for work, and a tip of the hat to Alison Mai at Steelray for the link.

Business Acumen and Strategy

  • Vanessa Bates Ramirez reports on a new robot-staffed warehouse in Tel Aviv that fills orders in under 5 minutes and fits in 6,000 square feet of floor space. 2 minutes to read.
  • Rebecca Addison notes the growing use of Cobots—robots design to collaborate on tasks with humans, rather than work independently. Like Amazon’s warehouse robots. 4 minutes to read.
  • Shahab Arif updates us on how automotive manufacturers are speeding up the production line with automation, assisted by humans. 7 minutes to read.

Managing Projects

  • Leigh Espy tutors us on the Critical to Quality tree, a requirements elicitation tool to help you get your customer from general to specific success criteria. 4 minutes to read.
  • Mike Clayton explains the value of a quantitative business case as a decision-making tool. Video, 5 minutes, safe for work.
  • Tony Adams reminds us to keep the stakeholders engaged during a long, long project. 3 minutes to read.
  • Toby Elwin tells us why we shouldn’t let a skeptic drive business change. 3 minutes to read.
  • Michael Wharton shows how to estimate annual budgets for your department projects using Project Online of Project Server. 4 minutes to read.
  • Cornelius Fichtner interviews PMO consultant Hussain Bandukwala on setting up a fully functioning PMO in 100 days. Podcast, 44 minutes, safe for work.

Managing Software Development

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from what constitutes a team to coaching to mindsets. 7 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
  • John Yorke begins sharing his assignment to “create, build, and run a virtual office comprising of cross-functional teams that create software”—sustainably and profitably. 4 minutes to read.
  • Johanna Rothman concludes her series on creating a product-based development organization. Part 5 and 6 are here; each has links to the earlier posts. Total for the series about 25 minutes to read.
  • The Clever PM addresses prioritization of product feature development from three perspectives: value, difficulty, and instinct. 4 minutes to read.
  • Nishi Grover Garg explains how to optimize your hardening sprint to produce the best possible quality before release. 5 minutes to read.
  • Amir Ghahrai insists that the problem with modern QA is the retreat from manually exercising the software. You can’t automate unless you identify the scenarios. 9 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Grand CanyonAlexander Maasik curates his weekly list of leadership articles, from OKR’s to AQ to making a dent in the universe. 5 outbound links, 3 minutes to read
  • Melissa Boggs reminds us that exhaustion is not a status symbol. Well-managed teams work at a sustainable pace. 3 minutes to read.
  • William Malsam coaches us on delivering constructive criticism—expressing a valid and well-reasoned opinion. 5 minutes to read.
  • Dan Rockwell notes the dangers of being over-helpful—in other words, doing someone’s job for them. 2 minutes to read.

Research and Insights

  • Gabrielle Coppola reports on a new line of R&D for autonomous cars: helping AI predict what human pedestrians are about to do—what human drivers do intuitively. 4 minutes to read.
  • Mary Haskett help us understand face recognition—biometric identification of a live face image, validated against a stored (enrolled) image of that person. 5 minutes to read.
  • Adam Shostack reviews a GAO report on the Equifax breach and shares his own follow-up questions. 2 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Heather Landy curated a list of the top ten Quartz at Work stories about life at the office, from awkward eye contact to dorky motivational posters to cushy office perks as a form of oppression. 5 minutes to read.
  • Rebecca Knight explains how to stay focused in a noisy open office, from setting group expectations to noise-canceling headphones. 8 minutes to read.
  • Lisette Sutherland reports on five new tools for remote work and collaboration at a distance. Podcast, 8 minutes, safe for work.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of July 16 – 22

New project management articles published on the web during the week of July 16 – 22. And this week’s video: a quick review of recent changes to Microsoft Visio, followed by a demonstration of how to integrate Visio with Microsoft Project. 26 minutes, safe for work.

Business Acumen and Strategy

  • Bill Taylor focuses our attention on three reasons why Netflix is successful. And focus is the key word here. 4 minutes to read.
  • Greg Satell revisits the failures of Blockbuster, Kodak, and Xerox. The root cause of each of their failures was not just disruption. 5 minutes to read.
  • Dan Kopf summarizes a report from the OECD on what higher tariffs might mean for economic growth. It’s not all about the retail price of manufactured goods. 2 minutes to read.

Managing Projects

  • Satya Narayan Dash tutors us on contingency reserve and management reserve. 9 minutes to read.
  • John Goodpasture explains David Hulett’s approach to integrating the risk register and the project plan. 2 minutes to read.
  • Elise Stevens interviews Karlene Agard on value management in mega-projects—reducing cost without reducing value. Podcast, 16 minutes.
  • Dmitriy Nizhebetskiy delivers a very detailed mini-course on project stakeholder management, from identification to creating a Register. 16 minutes.
  • Mike Clayton provides detailed instructions on how to get the most from our next “lessons learned” meeting. 12 minutes to read.
  • The folks at Clarizen share their thoughts on milestones—on both good and bad practices. 3 minutes to read.

Managing Software Development

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from Beyond Budgeting to why open floor plans suck to results of the scrum master survey. 7 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
  • Raffaela Rein describes inclusive design as removing barriers to access for the disabled, from the deaf to the color blind and beyond. 5 minutes to read.
  • Erik Dietrich describes seven types of testing (beyond functional testing) that you should be doing. 5 minutes to read.
  • James Kobelius considers what it might mean to certify an AI product as “safe.” 6 minutes to read.
  • Janelle Shane gives us a practitioner’s view of why artificial narrow intelligence is more achievable than artificial general 5 minutes to read.
  • Alex Aitken questions the predictive value of velocity. 3 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Alexander Maasik curates his weekly list of leadership articles, from fairy tales and fables to accurate data to being compassionate. 5 outbound links, 4 minutes to read.
  • John Yorke explains the concepts exemplified by Herbie, a key character in The Goal, by Eliyahu Goldratt. This is a novel that introduces the Theory of Constraints. 7 minutes to read.
  • Mary Jo Asmus points out some of the upsides to delegating. 2 minutes to read.

Research and Insights

  • Mike Griffiths catalogs some of the AI assistant applications we should look forward to as project managers. 7 minutes to read.
  • Max Steinmetz collates some recent statistics on Agile adoption and results. 3 minutes to read.
  • Alison Coleman previews a new report from PMI: Next Practices: Maximizing the Benefits of Disruptive Technologies on Projects. 5 minutes to read.
  • Oliver Staley reports on a new study from a business school in Madrid which compared formal and automated communication with informal communications at work. 2 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Elizabeth Harrin shares an extract from her excellent new book, Project Manager, which describes three ways to get that first job as a PM. 5 minutes to read.
  • Berta Melder explains why serotonin is important to our happiness and productivity and identifies daily activities that can help us produce more of it. 4 minutes to read.
  • Kerry Wills reminds us to observe a few simple workplace courtesies—like keeping your calendar updated. A minute to read.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of July 2 – 8

New project management articles published on the web during the week of July 2 – 8. And this week’s video: Bill Gates discusses his pledge of $2 billion for investment in new alternative energy technologies. 3 minutes, safe for work.

Business Acumen and Strategy

  • John Detrixhe points out some of the reasons that European “Big Tech” companies are smaller than their US and Asian counterparts. 4 minutes to read or scan the high points.
  • Benjamin Gomes-Casseres examines the apparent death of the “GE model” in the aftermath of that company’s removal from the Dow Jones Industrial index. 4 minutes to read.
  • Peter Diamandis summarizes three ways that technology is making a huge difference in healthcare, from personalized medications to intelligent prevention. 6 minutes to read.

Managing Projects

  • John Goodpasture notes that schedule slack is your most powerful tool for managing risks and explains why. 2 minutes to read.
  • Rob England follows up on the 20 IT project management dysfunctions he gleefully listed on Twitter. “If only the strong survive your system it’s time you fixed your system.” 3 minutes to read.
  • Michael Wood identifies the challenges inherent in managing projects in a change-resistant culture. 7 minutes to read.
  • Brad Egeland warns us not to let the project become about the technology. 5 minutes to read.
  • Mike Clayton explains the Belbin Team Profile, a widely used team assessment tools. Think of it as roles defined by behavior, useful for diagnosing team dysfunction. Video, 6 minutes, safe for work.
  • Joel Carboni posts another in his occasional series on the characteristics of a sustainable project manager; this time focusing on the PM as an agent of change. 2 minutes to read.
  • Elizabeth Harrin interviews Bill Dow on the PMO life cycle, including the need to eventually close them down. 3 minutes to read, or watch the video, just over 3 minutes, safe for work.

Managing Software Development

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from scaling Scrum to whether Agile is a cult to Agile organization design. 7 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
  • Chris Kenst makes the case for including testers in code reviews. 5 minutes to read.
  • Kiron Bondale asks: when a team member leaves and knowledge transfer is required, does it matter whether the team is using Agile methods? 2 minutes to read.
  • Roman Pichler advocates a growth mindset to improve your product management skills. 6 minutes to read.
  • Jennifer Bonine interviews Gene Gotimer on a practitioner’s view of the pervasive role of QA in DevOps. Video, 12 minutes, safe for work.

Applied Leadership

  • Alexander Maasik curates his weekly list of leadership articles, from team goal-setting to why team-building exercises don’t work as well as team nurturing. 5 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
  • Scott Cochrane says that the way to avoid decision-making disasters is to always know who “holds the key” to the decision. 2 minutes to read.
  • Melody Stone shares some insights into selecting meeting attendees and some behavioral “failure modes.” 4 minutes to read.

Research and Insights

  • Lila McLellan reports on a new study that found open office layouts may make people less productive and change the way they communicate. 3 minutes to read.
  • Andrew Mauboussin and Michael Mauboussin share the results of their research into how people interpret imprecise terms like “likely” and possibly.” 7 minutes to read.
  • Scott Gerber recaps input from the Young Entrepreneur Council on the new technologies that appear ready for widespread use. 4 minutes to read.
  • Teppo Felin reconsiders the “gorilla on the basketball court” experiment: if humans are blind to what is obviously out of place, does that simply mean we are good are focusing our attention? And what does that imply about artificial intelligence? 18 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Suzanne Lucas reflects on the growing gap between biology and social mores in the age of #MeToo. The law isn’t keeping up, so corporate rules need to adapt. Quickly. 7 minutes to read.
  • Alicia Adamczyk notes that requesting help from people with whom we have “weak ties”—not friends or family—can be more effective precisely because they are not like us. 3 minutes to read.
  • Leigh Espy tells us how to build rapport with remote team members. 5 minutes to read.

Enjoy!