New PM Articles for the Week of June 18 – 24

New project management articles published on the web during the week of June 18 – 24. And this week’s video: über-nerd Adam Savage builds a 1,000 shot NERF-blaster. In one day. And tests it against three dinosaurs. 37 minutes, safe for work. The NERF-blaster … yeah, leave that at home.

Business Acumen and Strategy

  • Andy Heikkila warns that the Atlanta ransomware attack is a harbinger of “Fire Sale” cyber attacks. 5 minutes to read.
  • Steve Denning examines the ten “Agile Axioms” that still make executives nervous. Note that none of the five largest and fastest-growing firms in the world existed prior to 1975 and three were founded less than 25 years ago. 10 minutes to read.
  • Renee Troughton analyzes why scaled Agile approaches keep falling short of executive expectations. 10 minutes to read.

Managing Projects

  • Henny Portman reviews Jack Duggal’s new book, The DNA of Execution Strategy. This looks like a must-read for project portfolio managers. 5 minutes to read.
  • Satya Narayan Dash tutors us on some critical concepts: Critical Path, Criticality Analysis, and Criticality Index. 8 minutes to read.
  • Mike Clayton explains the concept of Critical Chain, as developed by Elihu Goldratt. Video, 7 minutes, safe for work.
  • Kiron Bondale points out the possible pitfalls of posting information radiators, from inaccuracy to a lack of context. 2 minutes to read.
  • Laura Barnard continues her series on the PMO leader mindset with an article on instilling focus. 9 minutes to read.
  • Elizabeth Harrin reports from the PMO Conference 2018 in London. Includes a video, six and a half minutes, safe for work.
  • Kerry Wills asserts the need for projects, project management competencies, and PMO functions in a Scaled Agile environment. 2 minutes to read.
  • Cesar Abeid and Traci Duez interview Rick Morris on the need to develop our influencing skills. Podcast, 46 minutes, safe for work.

Managing Software Development

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his list of Agile content, from business agility to re-thinking the corporate budgeting process to how to say ‘No.’ 7 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
  • John Ferguson Smart explains Behavior Driven Development, in the context of Agile methods and a DevOps culture. 3 minutes to read.
  • Simon Schrijver debunks the claim that tests are useless if they don’t fail. 2 minutes to read.
  • Matt Heusser tutors us on Cyclomatic Complexity, a tool to identify candidates for refactoring. Useful for project managers with some background in writing code. 3 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • SaladAlexander Maasik curates his weekly list of leadership articles, from start-up company lessons learned to the value-add of an OKR Champion to learning “how to sit quietly in a room alone.” 5 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
  • Suzanne Lucas interviews Dr. Lori Whatley on what to say (and what not to say) when an employee seems to be depressed. 4 minutes to read.
  • Ben Mackie shares some tips to improve the value you get from 1-on-1 meetings. 4 minutes to read.

Research and Insights

  • John Goodpasture begins a series on Prospect Theory, an approach to decision making under conditions of risk developed by Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky. 4 minutes to read.
  • Olga Grinina reminds us that training AI from data based on human decisions will incorporate human biases. Perhaps we need to make the machine-generated algorithms more visible. 4 minutes to read.
  • Paul Axtel cites recent research indicating that the most productive meetings have fewer than 8 people. 2 minutes to read.
  • Lila MacLellan reports that a study of hangry, the condition of being hungry, irritable, and angry all at the same time, isn’t just about blood sugar. 4 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Poornima Vijayshankar and Holly Cardew return to discuss what a remote team needs to be successful when working on a mission-critical project. 2 minutes to read, plus a 9-minute video, safe for work.
  • Garland Coulson shares an infographic that can help you determine the best way to deal with each task in your inbox. 4 minutes to read.
  • Kayla Matthews lists some of the reasons to have a green office and some of the ways to pursue that sort of sustainability. 3 minutes to read.


New Post at AITS: 3 Popular PMO Design Models

My latest article for AITS was published today: 3 Popular PMO Design Models You Should Know About.

I frequently stop by the project management subreddit to see what is being discussed and join in sometimes. One frequent question is, “I have been tasked with setting up a PMO. What should I do now?” I give my thoughts on the potential utility of three common models: Center of Excellence, Center of Governance, and Center of Administration.

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

New PM Articles for the Week of February 12 – February 18

New project management articles published on the web during the week of February 12 – 18. And this week’s video: Mike Clayton explains project governance, beginning with the word’s origins in ancient Greece. 5 minutes, safe for work.

Must read!

  • PMI has released their 2018 Pulse of the Profession. This is the preeminent practitioner survey in the project management field, and you owe it to yourself to download and at least scan it. 35 pages.
  • April Glaser recaps the recently settled court case between Uber and Google over autonomous car technology. There’s more here than cars or tech secrets. 6 minutes to read.
  • Derek Huether notes that everyone in the organization needs to understand the metrics that drive the business and what behaviors they encourage. 3 minutes to read.

Established Methods

  • Elizabeth Harrin and Colin Ellis share a live Q&A on the Facebook Project Management Café. Subject: how to create a project team culture. The video is 20 minutes, or you can read the transcript in a bit less.
  • Luca Collina reflects on what he’s learned from managing projects teams spread across multiple countries. 6 minutes to read.
  • Glen Alleman gets profound on the purpose of plans and planning. 1 minute to read.
  • Kiron Bondale lists the patterns and anti-patterns distilled from a decade of reviewing project lessons learned. 2 minutes to read.
  • James Bach shares some contrarian opinions on testing, control, and agency. 4 minutes to read.
  • Elise Stevens interviews Lindsay Scott on improving the effectiveness of the PMO as a business partner. Podcast, 24 minutes, safe for work.

Agile Methods

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from mental models to organizational resilience to why you should love your customers’ problems. 7 outbound links, 3 minutes to scan.
  • Tamás Török looks at the causes and cures for reduced development team performance. 7 minutes to read.
  • Pete Houghton defines a new term—Manumation—to describe automation tools that require a lot of manual intervention. 2 minutes to read.
  • Ham Vocke explains the Test Pyramid as a metaphor for grouping software tests into buckets of different granularity. 16 minutes, first of a series being appended as he writes them.
  • Ryan Ripley interviews Steve Porter from the PST team at on a wide variety of Scrum topics and approaches. Podcast, 44 minutes, safe for work.

Applied Leadership

  • David Miller expounds on five key ethical practices that project managers must follow. 5 minutes to read.
  • David Robins makes the case for Agile Management—adopting Agile methods and principles organization-wide. 7 minutes to read.
  • Jim Taggert has begun a six-part series based on Peter Senge’s The Fifth Discipline: The art and practice of the learning organization. Parts 1 and 2, each around 4 minutes to read.

Technology, Techniques, and Human Behavior

  • Darren Guccione introduces us to the Tor browser and the Dark Web, where everyone is anonymous, performance sucks, and wonders abound. 6 minutes to read.
  • Joe Daniels alerts us to a scary new technology—an app that inserts Nicolas Cage’s face in any movie might also be used to replace video surveillance images with … your face. 4 minutes to read.
  • Nick Pisano gives us a primer on the difference between Third and Fourth generation software. 4 minutes to read.
  • Kerry Wills shares his approach to organizing, using Microsoft Office: “I think in PowerPoint and organize in Excel.” Just a minute to read but leave him a comment on your approach.

Working and the Workplace

  • Suzanne Lucas explains how to play Change Resistance Bingo—all you need is a proposed change and as people offer their cliched reasons for delay … 2 minutes to read.
  • Joan Davis describes her communication-centric approach to remote consulting. 5 minutes to read.
  • Francisco Sáezshares key insights from Cal Newport’s Deep Work. 3 minutes to read.
  • Melissa McEwen observes that there is no longer an entry point for junior developers, and that’s a problem for the entire industry. 5 minutes to read.