Exposure Draft for the PMBOK Guide – Sixth Edition

PMBOK Guide 5th EditionPMI is updating the PMBOK Guide, once again. As they have done with prior updates, an exposure draft is available from now through April 6, 2016 for comment by PMI members in good standing.

Key changes to this edition are:

  • The inclusion of more detailed information on agile and other iterative practices including:
    • Information about agile and other practices often used in an adaptive environment in each Knowledge Area section (Sections 4–13)
    • An appendix to The Standard for Project Management on agile and other iterative practices
  • A new chapter on the role of the project manager which discusses the PMI Talent Triangle, including greater emphasis on the strategic and business knowledge aspect of project management

It seems that each release of the PMBOK Guide includes a bit more input from advocates for Agile methods. It’s good to see the Standard keeping pace with current notions of best practices.

New PM Articles for the Week of September 28 – October 4

Red BalloonNew project management articles published on the web during the week of September 28 – October 4. We give you a high-level view so you can read what interests you. Recommended:

Must read!

  • Peter Gray summarizes the declining emotional maturity and resilience among college students, manifesting as an inability to handle setbacks and an escalating demand for services.
  • Esther Derby recently reflected on best practices for Agile, and selected seven to share with us. Note: these aren’t just Agile practices, but approaches to problem-solving.
  • Lisa McLeod analyzes the Volkswagen emission spoofing scandal, as a proactive deception driven by the CEO’s goals for the company, rather than adding customer value.

Established Methods

  • Todd Williams points out the pitfalls in organizational change management.
  • Philip Smith notes that that hard part, in these times of rapid change, is making change “stick.”
  • Allen Ruddock argues that the key to a successful project is communicating to the stakeholders what’s at stake for them – “What’s in it for me?”
  • Harry Hall lists nine ways to start a new project, in order to avoid being behind at the point of 15% completion.
  • Dhan Wa says we’re in the midst of a generational change in the practice of project management.
  • Bruce Harpham explains how to grow your internal network, and why you should.
  • Vivek Prakash reports on how the team that translated the PMBOK 5th Edition into Hindi set ground rules for handling disagreement, to meet their project schedule.
  • Glen Alleman explores the unmyths of project duration estimating.
  • Rich Maltzman makes the link between assumptions and risks, and then trots out an example from fish biology to illustrate his point.
  • John Goodpasture identifies some of the crucial innovations that arose from the American Civil War and World War II.

Agile Methods

  • Gil Broza gives us the “why” of working in iterations.
  • Mike Cohn wants to see the Scrum coaches and trainers shift their thinking, to grow the community rather than solidify their market share.
  • Jaap Dekkinga lists six levels of “doneness” that should be considered in Agile planning.
  • Jenny Brown notes some of the organizational challenges that can inhibit the adoption of Lean / Six Sigma methods.

Applied Leadership

  • Peter Saddington does a review of recent research into leadership and employee engagement, and finds evidence that we should be leading from the heart.
  • Art Petty reports on the lessons he learned from delivering two leadership workshops for the Alabama Jail Association. Leading in dangerous situations amplifies success and failure.
  • Tom McFarlin shares his professional approach to dealing with business relationships gone sour.

Podcasts and Videos

  • Elizabeth Harrin addresses questions about online project management training and the level of difficulty of the PMP exam. Just three minutes, safe for work.
  • Alena Kuzniatsova recommends a video from the Agile2015 Conference: a panel discussion on adopting Agile methods. Just over an hour, safe for work.
  • Jesse Fewell shares two brief videos, on #NoEstimates and virtual collaboration. A total of 13 minutes, safe for work.
  • Elise Stevens interviews Amany Nuseibeh on the need for project managers to live the PMI Code of Ethics. Just 17 minutes, safe for work.
  • Ruairi O’Donnellan shares a funny short video on eliminating risk. Less than two minutes, and safe for work as long as you use the enclosed stand.


New PM Articles for the Week of November 10 – 16

Balloon Over the WallNew project management articles published on the web during the week of November 10 – 16. We give you a high-level view so you can read what interests you. Recommended:

PM Best Practices

  • Kevin Kern traces the trajectory of re-planning from reactive to proactive to predictive.
  • Elizabeth Harrin summarizes a presentation by Mark Englehardt at PMI Hungary’s Art of Projects Conference, “Project Risk Management Doesn’t Have to be Difficult.”
  • Steven Levy outlines the elements of the project charter.
  • Roxi Bahar Hewertson considers how four types of mastery contribute to leadership success.
  • Rich Maltzman demonstrates the impact of context in our communications, with a graphic that lets us deceive ourselves.
  • Bruce Harpham presents the PMBOK view of managing conflict, as a follow-up to last week’s post on sources of project management conflict.
  • Bruce Benson explores conscious uncoupling, as members of a struggling organization fight to preserve the size of their piece of the pie.
  • Michael Girdler links morale problems and lowered and productivity as result of organizational change to the project communications plan.
  • Lynda Bourne contrasts the functions of management with the functions of governance.
  • Allen Ruddock looks at the “overs and unders” that contribute to failed projects.
  • Kerry Wills argues for picking team members who may not be perfect in any one role, but can play multiple roles.

Agile Methods

  • Mike Cohn illustrates the incremental and iterative nature of Agile development, with a sculpture metaphor.
  • Mike Griffiths says that the key to scaling Agile is not adding process, but facilitating the work of teams.
  • Terry Bunio points out the plain truth that “minimum viable product” is not always an appropriate approach.
  • Michiko Diby takes issue with the term “Scrum Master.”
  • Neil Killick: “We teams can make a huge difference to removing the typical dysfunctions around software estimates, simply by asking the right questions.”
  • Madhavi Ledalla champions automation and virtualization, as drivers of improved quality, reduced build time, and more predictability.
  • Milton Dillard explains what Agile acquisition support is, in the context of how the U.S. federal government lets contracts.

Podcasts and Videos

  • Cornelius Fichtner interviews Dave Cornelius on the project manager role in Lean and Agile approaches. Just 12 minutes, safe for work.
  • Mark Phillipy shares a presentation on improving task estimation using three-point estimates and critical chain. Just 35 minutes, safe for work.
  • Paul Ritchie posts his very first Crossderry Blog podcast, explaining why the Apple Watch won’t compete with the Swiss watch industry. Just 17 minutes, safe for work.

Pot Pouri

  • Suzanne Lucas offers her list of ten simple things to do (and stop doing) in order to boost your career.
  • Coert Visser explains why you should interrupt.
  • Ron Friedman says you’re probably not getting enough sleep; explains how it’s impacting the quality of your work; and then tells you what to do about it.
  • Nick Pisano weighs in on Net Neutrality, the economics of controlling access to information, and the demands of the powerful interests who want that control.