New PM Articles for the Week of June 3 – 9

New project management articles published on the web during the week of June 3 – 9. And this week’s video: Mike Clayton shares six actions and behaviors that will significantly improve your project outcomes. Not just for project management; much of this stuff is valuable for all aspects of your life. Under 4 minutes, safe for work.

Pictures this week from our short camping trip to Pacific City, Oregon.

Business Acumen and Strategy

  • Greg Satell explains the evolution from corporate strategies based on value chains to those based on ecosystems. 5 minutes to read.
  • James Vincent and Chaim Gartenburg report on Amazon’s new Prime Air delivery drone, expected to begin delivering packages “within months.” If you work for a retail or logistics organization, your business model will need an update. 3 minutes to read.
  • John Detrixhe summarizes a draft communique from the G20 finance ministers that will make it harder for global tech firms to avoid corporate income taxes. 2 minutes to read.

Managing Projects

  • Gina Abudi tells us how to pitch our ideas for projects to the executives who “hold the purse.” 2 minutes to read.
  • Kiron Bondale revisits some old proverbs to find wisdom for today. 2 minutes to read.
  • John Goodpasture shares some rules of thumb that can help us estimate (or analyze an estimate) in the absence of statistical data. Just over a minute to read.
  • Francesco Marcatto reminds us that, while no two projects are alike, some roadblocks come up more frequently than others. 5 minutes to read.
  • Laura Barnard introduces her PMO Strategies podcast, from her background to the Project Management Day of Service to what she hopes listeners will take away from future podcasts. 15 minutes, safe for work.
  • Elizabeth Harrin explores the value proposition of a project dashboard when managing several projects at once. 8 minutes to read.

Managing Software Development

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly collection of Agile content, from Amazon Agility to DevOps as a strategic advantage to dates for product road maps. 7 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
  • Sidharth Malhotra explains the concept of micro-services using a metaphor based on an ice cream shop—call it the Dairy Queen architecture. 7 minutes to read.
  • Henny Portman reviews Jeff Patton’s classic, User Story Mapping. As usual, he summarizes all 18 chapters in two or three sentences, each. 4 minutes to read.
  • Tom Cagely admits that story points aren’t horrible, under certain circumstances, and then goes on to explain when they make sense. Each a little over 2 minutes.
  • Jan Jaap Cannegieter and Han Niessing describe two cases that illustrate the evolution from testing lead to test assurance officer and test coach. 6 minutes to read.
  • Ashley Bey does a deep dive on unit testing the parts of your system that interact with the outside world. Warning: high geek-level content! 9 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Richard Straub opines on the need for new management approaches and behaviors in an era of ecosystems. 4 minutes to read.
  • Suzanne Lucas explains edge collaboration, an organizational approach for making knowledge sharing across departments more efficient. 3 minutes to read.
  • Alex Circei explains why discipline is so important when leading engineers. Note: discipline is not externally imposed, and it certainly isn’t punishment. 4 minutes to read.

Research and Insights

  • Shelly Fan summarizes new research into brain-machine interface technology, funded by DARPA. You know: the people who funded the invention of the internet. 6 minutes to read.
  • Kayla Matthews reports on five research projects targeting defenses against cyber-attacks. 5 minutes to read.
  • Martin Giles assess the recent incidents of cyber security flaws found in semiconductor chips reported by outside researchers and finds that they take too long to fix them. 5 minutes to read.
  • Akash Deep lists a few steps to take to prevent spear phishing, the most successful technique used by cyber criminals to do their dirty work. 5 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Melody Wilding coaches us on how to control our emotions at work (or anyplace else). 3 minutes to read.
  • Leon Straker presents his assessment of different sitting postures for different types of tasks, with the goal of reducing back pain. 4 minutes to read.
  • Alyse Kalish has collected 22 team-building activities that don’t suck. Well, most of them don’t. 11 minutes to read.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of May 13 – 19

New project management articles published on the web during the week of May 13 – 19. And this week’s video: Mike Clayton explains the Voice of the Customer, a process for understanding stakeholder needs. 3 minutes, safe for work. Mike has produced over 80 of these brief videos on a wide variety of topics; check them out here.

Business Acumen and Strategy

  • Ronald Smith lists some Worst Practices for outsourcing IT. Yes, these are guaranteed failure drivers—go thou and do otherwise. 11 minutes to read.
  • Michael Li recaps several very public failures of AI business solutions where inherent bias crept into the system because no one was managing the risk. 5 minutes to read.
  • Hites Ahir, Nicholas Bloom, and Davide Furceri examine the impact of uncertainty, driven by political forces, on business investment and economic results.

Managing Projects

  • Elizabeth Harrin posted two webinars this week: How to Succeed as a Project Manager, based on her book, and How to Manage Multiple Projects. Each a little over an hour, safe for work.
  • George Freeman gives us his thoughts on Architectural Awareness, the newest addition to the PMI Talent Triangle. At some point, will this become a square? 6 minutes to read.
  • Kiron Bondale observes that project information radiators require behavior changes on the part of the senior stakeholders in order to actually communicate. 2 minutes to read.
  • Leigh Espy introduces us to the Lean Coffee meeting and tells how to organize one. 6 minutes to read.
  • Gerri Poling shares her thoughts on ITIL 4, the version introduced earlier this year. Just over 2 minutes to read.
  • Johanna Rothman begins a new series on Agile methods for budgeting; here’s part 2. 7 minutes to read both.

Managing Software Development

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from Friday deploy freezes to electronic vs. visual boards to unintended consequences of your metrics. 7 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
  • “Uncle Bob” Martin, who is a pilot and a programmer, shares his thoughts on the Boeing 737 Max 8 software failure that caused two crashes. 6 minutes to read.
  • Jason Skowronski explains staging environments—what they are and how they fit into the deployment cycle. 7 minutes to read.
  • Bas Dijkstra looks at two main reasons test automation doesn’t meet expectations, then outlines six steps to avoid falling into these traps. 7 minutes to read.
  • Alexey Gayduk describes the implementation of a chatbot system using an automated insurance agent as an example. 4 minutes to read.
  • Marija Cvjetkovic is a product owner and a cartoonist. Here are a few “graphical” thoughts about her day job. 6 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Cornelius Fichtner interviews Agata Czopek on being an inclusive leader of a diverse project team. Podcast, 18 minutes, safe for work.
  • Mike Cohn tells us what the team wants from their Scrum Master. And any manager, for that matter. 4 minutes to read.
  • Sarah Hoban shares her experience with community goal setting. 3 minutes to read or download the podcast and listen for less than 5 minutes; safe for work.
  • Andy Makar recommends three must-read books to help a leader build better teams. 4 minutes to read.

Research and Insights

  • Gemma Read and Jason Thompson expect that if pedestrians can step into the road without fear of an autonomous vehicle hitting them, traffic will grind to a halt. 4 minutes to read.
  • Andreas Sandre summarizes 14 trends shaping consumer technology, transportation, and more. 4 minutes to read.
  • Colin Jones shares his notes on AWS security essentials, based on a video by Aaron Bedra. 6 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Alice Boyes, author of The Anxiety Toolkit, explains what anxiety does to us at work, and it’s not good. 4 minutes to read.
  • Mike Vardy advocates for working at the speed of right—taking the time for critical thought and working on the right things. 2 minutes to read.
  • Michelle Cheng give us the executive summary of a survey on the most disruptive office distractions. If at least five make you feel guilty, there’s hope for you. 2 minutes to read.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of May 6 – 12

New project management articles published on the web during the week of May 6 – 12. And this week’s video: Angela Lee Duckworth explains her research into grit—the power of passion and perseverance, and working toward long-term goals. While her research began with students, she also studied adults in the work environment. 6 minutes, safe for work. Tip of the hat to Johanna Rothman for the link!

Business Acumen and Strategy

Managing Projects

  • Mike Clayton goes into detail on a code of conduct for project managers, generally and as espoused by PMI, APM, the Institute of Business Ethics, and the MBA Oath. 14 minutes to read.
  • Cesar Abeid interviews his colleague at Automattic, Karen Arnold, on building a geographically distributed team. Podcast, 37 minutes, safe for work.
  • John Goodpasture comments on “hub and spoke” project networks, as described by Andrew Shipilov. Two interesting points of view. 2 minutes to read.
  • Mike Griffiths examines the way the new PMI Standard for Risk Management in Portfolios, Programs, and Projects applies to Agile methods and finds a lot to like. 8 minutes to read.
  • Glen Alleman has compiled a list of around 470 risk management resources, from papers to books to these, available from public sites. I suggest searching the page for keywords.
  • Greg Satell opines on why change management initiatives so often fail and how we can improve the odds. 6 minutes to read.
  • Luca Collina is conducting a survey to solicit your thoughts on failing (or failed) change initiatives and how they might be recovered. 3 minutes or less to take the survey.

Managing Software Development

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from liberating structures for Scrum Masters to dot voting to the Collabnet state of Agile report. 7 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
  • Kiron Bondale considers the optimal length of a sprint. OK, you guessed it: it depends. 2 minutes to read.
  • Guarav Dhooper gives his opinion on sprint durations and story sizing. 4 minutes to read.
  • Johanna Rothman closes out her series on product roles with Part 7 and Part 8, each about 3 minutes to read. If you missed an earlier part, she includes links to all 8.
  • Valerie Senyk announces the results of her poll of REALagility Newsletter readers, identifying the skills every Scrum Master should strive to develop. 3 minutes to read.
  • Scott Fitzpatrick identifies several practices for reducing the time, infrastructure, and effort spent on testing. 5 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Marcella Bremer points to the mid-point between the heroic leader and the servant leader: the host. 4 minutes to read.
  • Mary Jo Asmus reminds us that all leaders are also followers. 2 minutes to read. Boomers: if you suddenly feel the need to listen to Jerry Garcia sing Ripple, click here.
  • Sarah Hoban tells us how to network effectively as a project manager. 3 minutes to read.

Research and Insights

  • Joan Palmiter Bajorek digs into the consequences of gender and race biases still inherent in voice recognition technology. 4 minutes to read.
  • Amanda Woo analyzes our interactions with smart speakers and wonders whether our behavior will be affected by devices with no human capacity for taking offense. 4 minutes to read.
  • Katharine Ellen Foley reports on neurological research that indicates the ideal time to tackle leadership roles is in your mid-50’s. I’m so over-the-hill … 3 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Stav Ziv lists seven actions to take that will clear out the waste in your calendar (or diary, if you’re in the UK). 8 minutes to read.
  • Andy Oziemblo observes that an increasingly mobile and health-conscious workforce is leading to a revolution in office design. 4 minutes to read.
  • Soomi Lee reports that even a small loss of sleep can impact productivity the following day. 4 minutes to read.

Enjoy!