New PM Articles for the Week of March 18 – 24

New project management articles published on the web during the week of March 18 – 24. And this week’s video: Mike Clayton explains business acumen: what it is, why it’s valuable, and how a project manager can work to develop business acumen. This is what is needed in order to become a trusted adviser to your sponsor, key stakeholders, and executive decision makers. 5 minutes, safe for work.

Business Acumen and Strategy

  • If there were a Winter Olympics of global politics, Brexit would be the Luge. Here is the status, as of Friday; as of Sunday, a petition to scrap Brexit has over 5 million signatures. 4 minutes to read both. The wrong business strategy for where this finally lands might prove catastrophic.
  • Patrick Walsh provides his analysis of the California Consumer Privacy Act. 6 minutes to read. And Spencer Feingold notes that few companies subject to the law are ready to comply; another 5 minutes.
  • Asha Saxena notes that GAAP accounting standards do not permit data to be capitalized on the balance sheet; however, data is nonetheless a corporate asset. 7 minutes to read.

Managing Projects

  • Glen Alleman listed over 250 links to the presentations, briefings, journal papers, and articles on increasing the Probability of Project Success (PoPS) he’s authored over the years. Quite a stack!
  • Elizabeth Harrin tells us how to address current issues from the lessons learned log. You have one of those, right? 4 minutes to read.
  • Jennifer Bridges explores a critical decision: if a project is failing, do we end it or push on through? Video, 6 minutes, safe for work.
  • Andy Jordan looks at what a PMO should do, and what it shouldn’t 7 minutes to read.
  • Cornelius Fichtner interviews Andy Burns on making the PMO leaner and more agile. Podcast, 32 minutes, safe for work.
  • Dale Howard shows how to use ad hoc grouping of tasks in MS Project. 3 minutes to read.

Managing Software Development

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from winning agile management trends to what data-driven means to contrasting Dow Jones Industrial Average members Microsoft and General Electric. 7 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
  • John Gillespie reminds us that metrics which are easy to collect are not necessarily the metrics that matter. 3 minutes to read.
  • Paul Grizzaffi points out the technical challenges you’ll have to overcome in order to run your automated tests in parallel. 6 minutes to read.
  • Dave Kearney builds a case for prototyping as a means for achieving alignment between the designers, developers, and customers. 4 minutes to read.
  • Kristin Jackvony justifies extensive testing of the validation applied to user inputs. Boring but necessary! 4 minutes to read.
  • John Demian explains metric-based alerting, for those using Amazon Web Services. Somewhat technical, but the vocabulary lesson is valuable. 7 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • The Forbes Insight Team and PMI explain how the C-suite can best support the transformation of the project management office. 3 minutes to read.
  • Peter Diamandis observes that traditional higher education, including the MBA, is losing its relevance and then calls our attention to what is replacing it. 9 minutes to read.
  • Chris Cook helps us look at delegation as actively assisting in someone else’s professional development. 5 minutes to read.
  • Tom Cagely continues his series on “guardrails” as a tool to maintain alignment with organization goals and objectives. Here is part 4; about 4 minutes to read both.

Research and Insights

  • Michael Grothaus recommends eight steps to reduce our exposure to digital data collection by Facebook, Google, and whoever else makes us nervous. 6 minutes to read.
  • Ananya Bhattacharya reports on a survey of US HR professionals and hiring managers indicates that souring foreign talent is an important part of their strategy. 3 minutes to read.
  • Paula Boddington shares her thoughts on the need for and possible elements of a baseline code of ethics for artificial intelligence. 14 minutes—long, but a thoughtful read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Peter Yang convinces us that slides are a poor form of communication—written narratives are where the enlightenment’s at. 3 minutes to read.
  • Adriana Girdler coaches us on the do’s and don’ts of meetings. Video, 5 minutes, safe for work.
  • Sarah Feldman reports on the results on a survey of what people find distracting at work. Just a minute to read.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of January 28 – February 3

New project management articles published on the web during the week of January 28 – February 3. And this week’s video: Adriana Girdler coaches us on facilitating a meeting. Focused on the first-timers but still worth a look even if you’ve been facilitating for years. 6 minutes, safe for work.

Business Acumen and Strategy

  • Mark McNamee and Athanasia Kokkinogeni observe, “In the eyes of businesses, the UK has come to resemble an emerging market.” Brexit is driving volatility. 6 minutes to read.
  • Steve Blank explains why McKinsey’s Three Horizons model for managing and budgeting for innovation and research is no longer applicable. 4 minutes to read.
  • Joel Manner explores Eric Schmidt’s prediction that the internet is dividing into three politically-defined regions: US-led, China-led, and EU-led. 9 minutes to read.

Managing Projects

  • Sylvia Moses describes the X-shaped skills of a highly capable project manager. 10 minutes to read.
  • Mike Griffiths covers the what, how, and why of project charters. 11 minutes to read.
  • Mike Clayton gives us a deep tutorial on project scheduling, from defining and sequencing activities through estimating durations and developing a schedule. 12 minutes to read.
  • John Goodpasture shares his slide presentation on preparing a request for proposal. 4 minutes to read, plus the slides.
  • Cornelius Fichtner interviews Douglas Knutzen on leveraging scheduling, execution, and team techniques to increase speed on your projects. Podcast, 20 minutes, safe for work.
  • Dave Prior interviews Jesse Fewell on the evolving role of the PMO in an agile organization. Podcast, 36 minutes, safe for work.
  • Jan Schiller recaps twelve habits that she has observed in successful project portfolio managers. 3 minutes to read.

Managing Software Development

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from Scrum limits to exemplary agile to the Scrum Master Trends Report 2019. 7 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
  • Mike Cohn makes it clear why software development teams have learned to focus on being done rather than estimating progress. 3 minutes to read.
  • Dave West points out the key nuggets in the 2019 Scrum mater Trends Report. 4 minutes to read.
  • Nandhini Saravanan explains the difference between horizontal and vertical scaling of databases and what each approach is useful for. 5 minutes to read.
  • Fio Dossetto extols the virtues of a heat map in analyzing the effectiveness of a user interface design. 6 minutes to read.
  • Joep Schuurkes tells us why we should have a test strategy and what it should cover. 3 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Simone Stolzoff tells how engineer Satya Nadella turned Microsoft, “From a culture of know-it-alls to a culture of learn-it-alls.” 9 minutes to read.
  • Lisette Sutherland interviews Wade Foster, CEO of Zapier—a 100% remote company with over 200 people—on the future of work. Podcast, 38 minutes, safe for work.
  • Leigh Espy sells us on problem-solving skills as a key part of career development. 3 minutes to read.

Research and Insights

  • Greg Satell sees inflection points in energy, synthetic biology, and computation that are about to dramatically transform society. 5 minutes to read.
  • Karen Hao updates us on facial recognition software. Accuracy is improving for women and minorities, but the potential for abuse still exists. 4 minutes to read.
  • Roamy suggests a low-tech alternative to a creepy RFID implant under the skin or an easily-lost card. It’s obvious, once you read it. 4 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Andy Silber advocates for Inbox Zero. 4 minutes to read.
  • Corrine Purtill reports on one of the key messages at the Davos conference: the four-day work week. 2 minutes to read.
  • Alex Reardon argues that when we’re sick, we should take an actual sick day—not just work from home. 3 minutes to read.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of January 21 – 27

New project management articles published on the web during the week of January 21 – 27. And this week’s video: Mike Clayton explains IT service management (ITSM) and how the ITIL (IT Infrastructure Library) framework helps to structure efficient creation, delivery, and maintenance of services. As Mike says, some understanding of ITSM is valuable for the practicing IT project manager. 8 minutes, safe for work.

Business Acumen and Strategy

  • Gita Gopinath, Chief Economist for the IMF, provides an executive summary of their forecast for reduced growth in the global economy. 4 minutes to read.
  • Heather Landy reports from Davos, where a survey of CEO’s from every region concurs with the IMF assessment—growth will slow in 2019. 2 minutes to read.
  • Hemant Taneja says that the era of move fast and break things is over. We should define MVP to be minimum virtuous product. 8 minutes to read.

Managing Projects

  • Elise Stevens interviews Julia Steel on getting buy-in from stakeholders. Podcast 22 minutes, safe for work.
  • Lindsay Curtis lists seven productive practices for change management. 4 minutes to read.
  • Leigh Espy tutors us on business process mapping. 6 minutes to read.
  • John Goodpasture reminds us to only measure the measurable. Just a minute to read.
  • Hayley Eubanks extracts two sections from a whitepaper by Jerry Manas on product portfolio management. 4 minutes to read.
  • Stuart Easton notes that since some estimates indicate that over 50% of projects fail, it can’t all be a failure of execution. 7 minutes to read.
  • Dmitriy Nizhebetskiy lists the five most popular articles posted on PM Basics 101 during 2018. In case you missed some of them. 2 minutes to read.

Managing Software Development

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from personality traits suitable for Agile teams to psychological safety to determining product value. 7 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
  • Kiron Bondale describes the Definition of Ready, a complement to the Definition of Done, in the context of the Scrum ceremonies. 2 minutes to read.
  • Nikolay Tsonev points out six mistakes to avoid when using Lean principles to manage a project. 5 minutes to read.
  • Henny Portman reviews The Professional Product Owner, by Don McGreal and Ralph Jocham. 4 minutes to read.
  • Rosalia Baé argues that the key to enhancing software quality is design thinking. 6 minutes to read.
  • Lou Rosenfeld interviews product design process influencer Rich Mironov on managing multiple points of view. Podcast, 21 minutes, safe for work.

Applied Leadership

  • Grand CanyonArt Petty reminds us that the big decisions are almost always clouded in ambiguity; consensus is elusive, and the decision maker has to embrace the moment. 4 minutes to read.
  • Elizabeth Harrin coaches us on how to be a mentor (which is not the same thing as a coach). 4 minutes to read.
  • Curt Nickisch interviews Amy Edmondson, author of the seminal paper, Psychological Safety and Learning Behavior in Work Teams and a new book. Podcast, 27 minutes, safe for work.

Research and Insights

  • Mike Murphy predicts that 2019 will be the year of foldable Android phones. Are we willing to pay more for a larger screen that fits in a pocket? 3 minutes to read.
  • Elias Groll interviews the legendary Jon Callas, who left his job as one of Apple’s senior security specialists for the ACLU so he could influence the public policy debate. 10 minutes to read.
  • Karen Hao reports on a new way to make algorithms behave in a more ethical manner: give them a sense of the uncertainty that humans experience in decision making. 4 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Helen Anderson tells us how she has been dealing with imposter syndrome and job-related stress. “You don’t have to know everything about everything.” 3 minutes to read.
  • Kayla Matthews lists nine time management techniques for remote workers. 4 minutes to read.
  • Suzanne Lucas advises us that some Glassdoor reviews are fake—the horror! But there are ways to spot them. 3 minutes to read.

Enjoy!