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  • Steve Blank explains why McKinsey’s Three Horizons model for managing and budgeting for innovation and research is no longer applicable. 4 minutes to read.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 7 – 13

New project management articles published on the web during the week of January 7 – 13. And this week’s video: Microsoft program manager Verlebie Chan talks about overcoming bias, expectations, and self-doubt and taking risks on her way to establishing her career as a software developer. 13 minutes to watch.

Business Acumen and Strategy

  • Mike Murphy reports from the Consumer Electronics Show 2019. “We’ve entered the post-smartphone era.” 8 minutes to read.
  • The folks at ELIX list the core business values of Amazon, as articulated and evolved by Jeff Bezos. 8 minutes to read.
  • Paul Rawlinson makes an elegant case for regulation as necessary to keep global trade from becoming a zero-sum game. 3 minutes to read.

Managing Projects

  • Mike Clayton recaps ten lessons he’s learned about project management over the years. Best line: “Stakeholder Engagement is Project Management for Sophisticated Adults.”8 minutes to read.
  • The folks at PM Times join forces to point out trends in project management, business analysis, and agile methods during 2019. 6 minutes to read.
  • Carolyn Smith shares lessons learned from two decades managing IT PMO organizations. 14 minutes to read but well worth it.
  • Leigh Espy tutors us on affinity diagrams—what they are and how to use them. 6 minutes to read.
  • Sandhya Gupta shares her checklist for sunsetting software products, from the vendor’s point of view. 7 minutes to read.
  • Elise Stevens interviews Susanne Madsen on managing stress while managing projects. Podcast, 34 minutes, safe for work.

Managing Software Development

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his list of Agile content, from the EPIQ model to product design principles to the Prime Directive. 7 outbound links, three minutes to read.
  • John Demian gets deep into the economics of a serverless (in this case AWS Lambda) framework for operations. 12 minutes to read.
  • Vladimir Fedak makes the argument against a switch to microservices. 4 minutes to read.
  • Scott Shipp wants to put the “engineering” back in software engineering. Hear, hear! 5 minutes to read.
  • Henny Portman name checks Agile frameworks, from well-known to obscure and a couple that I don’t think count as Agile frameworks. 12 minutes to read.
  • Kristin Jackvony explains how the Automation Test Wheel, an alternative concept to the testing pyramid that she described here, works in practice. 5 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Randy Conley gets a few leadership lessons from observing nature in action: one hawk and three crows. 5 minutes to read.
  • Mary Jo Asmus helps reflexive problem-solvers keep the problems with their owners with one simple question. 2 minutes to read.
  • Steve Keating explains the difference between a talker and a communicator. I’ll let you describe the transmitter. Here’s part 2. Each about 3 minutes to read.

Research and Insights

  • Marc Prosser asks whether facial recognition technology is still viable, now that 3D printed busts of people’s heads have been used to unlock 4 of 5 smartphones. 4 minutes to read.
  • Bill Gates, the world’s second-richest man, reports from a Harvard University lab on new robots shaped like nothing Isaac Asimov ever imagined. 4 minutes to read.
  • David Stringer and Kevin Buckland report on progress in getting to commercially viable solid-state battery technology, the key to faster charging. 6 minutes to read.
  • Paramita Ghosh explains the decentralized data storage approach commonly known as blockchain and points out a few good use cases. 5 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace.

  • Steph Smith curated a list of ten 2019 conferences for women in technology and on the way identified a couple of diversity scholarships. 6 minutes to read.
  • Alessandro Lulian makes the business case for hiring Millennials. For one thing, they outnumber us Boomers in the workforce. 4 minutes to read.
  • Brian Wallace shares an infographic explaining how to robot-proof your career, in case you’re asking for a friend. 3 minutes or so to read.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of October 8 – 14

New project management articles published on the web during the week of October 8 – 14. And this week’s video: Celeste Headlee’s TEDx talk on how to have a good conversation, even with people you profoundly disagree with. 12 minutes, safe for work, and a tip of the hat to Alison Mai at Steelray for the link.

Business Acumen and Strategy

  • Vanessa Bates Ramirez reports on a new robot-staffed warehouse in Tel Aviv that fills orders in under 5 minutes and fits in 6,000 square feet of floor space. 2 minutes to read.
  • Rebecca Addison notes the growing use of Cobots—robots design to collaborate on tasks with humans, rather than work independently. Like Amazon’s warehouse robots. 4 minutes to read.
  • Shahab Arif updates us on how automotive manufacturers are speeding up the production line with automation, assisted by humans. 7 minutes to read.

Managing Projects

  • Leigh Espy tutors us on the Critical to Quality tree, a requirements elicitation tool to help you get your customer from general to specific success criteria. 4 minutes to read.
  • Mike Clayton explains the value of a quantitative business case as a decision-making tool. Video, 5 minutes, safe for work.
  • Tony Adams reminds us to keep the stakeholders engaged during a long, long project. 3 minutes to read.
  • Toby Elwin tells us why we shouldn’t let a skeptic drive business change. 3 minutes to read.
  • Michael Wharton shows how to estimate annual budgets for your department projects using Project Online of Project Server. 4 minutes to read.
  • Cornelius Fichtner interviews PMO consultant Hussain Bandukwala on setting up a fully functioning PMO in 100 days. Podcast, 44 minutes, safe for work.

Managing Software Development

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from what constitutes a team to coaching to mindsets. 7 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
  • John Yorke begins sharing his assignment to “create, build, and run a virtual office comprising of cross-functional teams that create software”—sustainably and profitably. 4 minutes to read.
  • Johanna Rothman concludes her series on creating a product-based development organization. Part 5 and 6 are here; each has links to the earlier posts. Total for the series about 25 minutes to read.
  • The Clever PM addresses prioritization of product feature development from three perspectives: value, difficulty, and instinct. 4 minutes to read.
  • Nishi Grover Garg explains how to optimize your hardening sprint to produce the best possible quality before release. 5 minutes to read.
  • Amir Ghahrai insists that the problem with modern QA is the retreat from manually exercising the software. You can’t automate unless you identify the scenarios. 9 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Grand CanyonAlexander Maasik curates his weekly list of leadership articles, from OKR’s to AQ to making a dent in the universe. 5 outbound links, 3 minutes to read
  • Melissa Boggs reminds us that exhaustion is not a status symbol. Well-managed teams work at a sustainable pace. 3 minutes to read.
  • William Malsam coaches us on delivering constructive criticism—expressing a valid and well-reasoned opinion. 5 minutes to read.
  • Dan Rockwell notes the dangers of being over-helpful—in other words, doing someone’s job for them. 2 minutes to read.

Research and Insights

  • Gabrielle Coppola reports on a new line of R&D for autonomous cars: helping AI predict what human pedestrians are about to do—what human drivers do intuitively. 4 minutes to read.
  • Mary Haskett help us understand face recognition—biometric identification of a live face image, validated against a stored (enrolled) image of that person. 5 minutes to read.
  • Adam Shostack reviews a GAO report on the Equifax breach and shares his own follow-up questions. 2 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Heather Landy curated a list of the top ten Quartz at Work stories about life at the office, from awkward eye contact to dorky motivational posters to cushy office perks as a form of oppression. 5 minutes to read.
  • Rebecca Knight explains how to stay focused in a noisy open office, from setting group expectations to noise-canceling headphones. 8 minutes to read.
  • Lisette Sutherland reports on five new tools for remote work and collaboration at a distance. Podcast, 8 minutes, safe for work.

Enjoy!