New project management articles published on the web during the week of April 30 – May 6. And this week’s video: Mike Clayton explains the acronym ITTO, which refers to inputs, tools, techniques, and outputs, and why it takes up so much of the PMBOK. 4 minutes, safe for work. And two pictures from Bisbee Arizona, courtesy of Steve Miller—Thanks!
Avery Phillips notes that ransomware is here to stay. And paying the ransom may not be as damaging as the loss of trust. 3 minutes to read.
Bhaskar Chakravorti observes that, while the GDPR might seem like a good template for data privacy, not all countries agree that regulation is the best solution. 7 minutes to read.
Youyou Zhou analyzes the data, finding that far fewer international students are coming to the United States for an education. 2 minutes to read.
Niansheng Chu tutors us on Failure Mode and Effects Analysis, a structured approach to finding the risks inherent in a design or process, with examples. 8 minutes to read.
Suzanna Haworth gives us a deep understanding of the RACI chart and various alternatives. Also, a template! 15 minutes to read.
Sylvia Gindi does a deep and thorough dive into project deliverables and explains why a milestone isn’t a deliverable. 10 minutes to read.
Elizabeth Harrin examines five common roadblocks to success encountered by many (most?) projects and how to move them off the road. 4 minutes to read.
Brad Egeland also identifies five common causes of project failure and how to avoid them. 6 minutes to read.
John Goodpasture goes back to Nate Silver’s new classic, “The Signal and the Noise,” to frame Bayes Theorem as an iterative process. 2 minutes to read.
Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from decisions under uncertainty to minimum-viable-whatever to “other” customer success metrics. 2 minutes to read, 7 outbound links.
Bisser Ivanov begins a series he’s calling Kanban 101. 3 minutes to read.
Johanna Rothman explains the difference between minimum viable experiment (MVE) and minimum viable product (MVP). 5 minutes to read.
Ilia Pavlichenko describes The Speed Boat Game—an interesting product metaphor to get clients to talk about their pains and perceived value of a product. 3 minutes to read.
Marie-Eve Trempe provides a quick tutorial on velocity for Scrum teams and how to measure it and use it.
Alexander Maasik curates his weekly list of leadership content, from why entrepreneurs fail to tackle big problems to your imagination as a superpower. 3 minutes to read, 5 outbound links.
Jory McKay presents 5 key goal-setting exercises for high-performing teams, as practiced at places like Google, LinkedIn, DropBox, and more. 15 minutes to read.
Mary Jo Asmus says that leading means staying out of the weeds—if you love the work, maybe you shouldn’t be a manager. 2 minutes to read.
New project management articles published on the web during the week of February 26 – March 4. And this week’s video: And this week’s video: The Band of Heathens perform “You’re Gonna Miss Me When I’m Gone” on Austin City Limits, from 2011. Six minutes to watch; turn it up!
Tim Fernholz reports that a start-up is designing a satellite to deliver internet access from geosynchronous orbit. The technology tradeoffs and decisions here are fascinating. 5 minutes to read.
Mike Wehner briefs us on a new AI-powered assistant for the astronauts on the International Space Station, in the form of a floating, basketball-sized device with an animated face. 2 minutes to read.
Bruce Benson uses the occasion of a failed Russian satellite launch to remind us that managers who make technical decisions without input from the technical experts own the results. Just a minute to read.
Donna Fitzgerald previews the role of the project manager in the corporate Strategy Realization Office. You’ll need business acumen and you’ll need to be the right kind of agile. 6 minutes to read.
Mike Clayton gives us a ten-minute course on how to be a confident project manager.
John Goodpasture explores Pareto, Exponential, and Poisson distributions, and explains why we seem to use Normal distributions even when not applicable. 3 minutes to read.
Roger Swannell addresses the question of compiling documentation over the project life cycle. 2 minutes to read.
Kiron Bondale shares the questions he asks in project manager interviews. 2 minutes to read.
Stefan Wolpers curates his list of Agile content, from Launching an Agile transformation to distributed Agile leadership to product management trends. 7 outbound links, 2 minutes to scan.
John Yorke examines successful Agile software development and finds three underlying pillars. 6 minutes to read.
Henny Portman reviews The Kanban Guide for Scrum Teams, by Daniel Vacaniti and Scrum.org. less than 2 minutes to read.
Jeff Langr notes that Behavior Driven Development (BDD), like TDD, can generate more tests than benefits. Aside: false positives consume scarce resources! 5 minutes to read.
Ron Jeffries suggests that we can’t wait until the deadline to be done. 6 minutes to read.
Justin Rohrman shares some observations from working with a group that practices pair programming about 95% of the time. 3 minutes to read.
David Rock shares the leadership lesson that Microsoft learned: tell employees what you want them to strive for, in as few words as possible. 5 minutes to read.
Valerie Senyk describes the Netflix culture in terms of qualities and behaviors it values. 2 minutes to read.
Jim Taggert points out the importance of our mental models and their underlying assumptions. 2 minutes to read.
Technology, Techniques, and Human Behavior
Avery Phillips gets us up to speed on how to deal with national and medical security breaches. The more sensitive the data, the more valuable the target. 4 minutes to read.
Ham Vocke concludes his lengthy reference on the practical test pyramid. An excellent resource, nearly an hour to read but worth your time.
Khe Hy describes his approach to making better use of everything he reads. 6 minutes to read.
Working and the Workplace
Rosie Spinks reports that Estonia will soon be offering a visa for “digital nomads” who want to park there for up to a year while working online. About half of the population speaks English. 4 minutes to read.
Leigh Espy points out some of the behaviors that sabotage our careers. 4 minutes to read.
Dorie Clark explains how women can develop and promote their personal brand. Excellent advice for men in here, too. 6 minutes to read.
LaRae Quy articulates what it means to be positive in terms of what positive people never do. 5 minutes to read.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.