New PM Articles for the Week of October 1 – 7

New project management articles published on the web during the week of October 1 – 7. And this week’s video: Chris Forsberg makes the business case for a serverless architecture: namely, reducing the need for an Operations staff to nearly zero. 2 minutes, safe for work.

Also: Hussain Bandukwala has organized a PMO Virtual Summit, to be conducted October 16 – 18. The Summit will allow aspiring and first-time PMO leaders to hear from thought leaders like Bill Dow, Laura Barnard, and Andy Jordan. And it’s free—all you have to do is register. There’s also a free eBook with contributions from many of the speakers and Cornelius Fichtner did a quick interview podcast with Hussain. 3 minutes, safe for work.

Business Acumen and Strategy

  • Michelle Gelfand describes the problems arising from a merger of organizations with incompatible cultures. Case in point: Amazon and Whole Foods markets. 5 minutes to read.
  • Mike Murphy reports on the struggles (and closures) of several US-based robotics firms. Competition is building, although the market isn’t expanding very quickly. 2 minutes to read.
  • Uzma Barlaskar tells us how to develop a data-informed culture, rather than falling into a data-driven culture. The difference is more than semantics. 7 minutes to read.

Managing Projects

  • Elizabeth Harrin tutors us on programs (or programmes, in the UK), from the basics through three common types. 5 minutes to read.
  • Glenn Alleman gives us a clear explanation of the cone of uncertainty for projects and shares an extensive reading list. 3 minutes to read.
  • Dmitriy Nizhebetskiy shows us how to apply the Delphi Technique in a real project management example. 4 minutes to read.
  • Harry Hall persuades us to investigate the PMI-RMP risk management professional credential. 2 minutes to read.
  • Elise Stevens interviews Naomi Caietti on her new book, Transform Your Leadership: Getting unstuck and jumpstarting your career. Podcast, 27 minutes, safe for work.
  • Tim Runcie explains master projects in MS Project: what they are and when and how to use them. 6 minutes, safe for work.
  • Kris Hughes has rounded up 25 quotes that illustrate important aspects of project management. And none of those quoted are project managers! 8 minutes to read.

Managing Software Development

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his list of Agile content, from prescriptive practices (bad) to becoming more strategic (good) to why commitment cultures always win. 7 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
  • Johanna Rothman begins a series on designing a product-oriented organization. Here are parts two, three, with part four coming soon. About 12 minutes to read these three.
  • Roman Pichler tells us how to establish an effective product strategy process, from vision to the product backlog. 5 minutes to read.
  • Erik Dietrich walks us through seven types of testing so we might spot the holes in our testing strategy. 5 minutes to read.
  • Alex Punnen presents a diagram of software quality in the shape of an iceberg because bug testing is only the most visible element. 13 minutes to read.
  • Tim Bunter summarizes three core principles from James Wickett’s webinar on DevSecOps, but a link is included if you want to hear for yourself. 5 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Alexander Maasik curates his weekly list of leadership articles, from implementing OKR to being too productive to running your business barefoot. 5 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
  • George Jucan examines the ethical aspects of influencing (as opposed to manipulating) stakeholders. 6 minutes to read.
  • Payson Hall presents five principles for effective mentoring (and coaching). 2 minutes to read.

Research and Insights

  • MIT Technology Review reports on research that has created the first network of brain-to-brain thought exchange. Three people playing Tetris is just the beginning. 4 minutes to read.
  • Brian Krebs alerts us to a new trend in voice phishing: calls that credibly imitate contacts from your financial institution. 10 minutes to read.
  • Alison DeNisco Rayome on CareerBuilder’s new study: the US will add 8 million jobs over the next five years. Software developers and support specialists will be among the fastest-growing categories. 3 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Rebecca Knight explains how to cope with second-hand stress. 8 minutes to read.
  • Suzanne Lucas reports on a new law in Massachusetts that mandates employers who require a non-compete agreement to continue to pay you after you leave. 2 minutes to read.
  • Francisco Sáez recaps advice from Chip and Dan Heath on how we can change our own behavior. 3 minutes to read.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of August 20 – 26

New project management articles published on the web during the week of August 20 – 26. And this week’s video: Elizabeth Harrin recommends three books for project managers at the beginning of their careers. 4 minutes, safe for work.

Business Acumen and Strategy

  • Ben Buchanan recaps recent moves by several tech firms to disrupt Russian and Iranian influence campaigns directed at the US 2018 elections. They might be outmatched. 4 minutes to read.
  • Ellice Perez, Head of Operations at Waymo, updates us on their Early Rider program which started providing transportation services in Phoenix using self-driving vehicles in April 2017. 4 minutes to read.
  • Igor Ilunin shares a quick update on progress in applying the internet of things (IoT) to make our cities smarter. 2 minutes to read.

Managing Projects

  • Joe Brown explains several alternative ways to hand off an innovation project from the research team to the folks who will turn it into a product. 4 minutes to read.
  • Glen Alleman displays the Venn diagram of project management and system engineering of products. They are plainly inseparable, and both are needed. 2 minutes to read.
  • Elise Stevens interviews Mark Price Perry on the case for a business-driven PMO. Podcast, 22 minutes, safe for work.
  • Susanne Madsen links us to the ten best project management podcasts. 4 minutes to read.
  • Kiron Bondale thinks we should abandon the use of some terms commonly batted about in the project management community. 2 minutes to read.

Managing Software Development

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from servant leadership to the pace of change to mental models for product managers. 7 outbound links, 2 minutes to read.
  • Duncan Evans get heretical: “Scrum and Kanban are basically the same.” Nuclear fireball in three, two … 2 minutes to read.
  • Patrick Stafford lists some web page copy practices that should be avoided, like shaming users into action. 5 minutes to read.
  • Emma Lilliestam explains authentication and authorization using the metaphor of crossing an international border and then applies it to security testing. Elegant! 4 minutes to read.
  • Rich Mironov expounds on making customer interviews and product validation a routine part of the way product managers spend their week. 5 minutes to read.
  • Tom Cagley begins a series on using Monte Carlo analysis for estimation of duration based on throughput—even when using Agile methods. Here’s part two. 5 minutes to read both.
  • Dominic Price decants some insights on what agile practitioners are experiencing from the questions he received in an AMA-style forum on the Atlassian Community. 3 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Alexander Maasik curates his weekly list of leadership articles, from keeping business goals simple to becoming irresistible to wisdom from a bartender. 3 minutes to read.
  • Suzanne Lucas shares a 7-point checklist for conducting tough conversations with your direct reports. 3 minutes to read.
  • Natalie Warnert explains why consultant billable hour utilization bonuses and other incentives are actually de-motivational. 5 minutes to read.

Research and Insights

  • Leah Fessler reports on recent research that indicates giving advice might make you feel more motivated than receiving 3 minutes to read.
  • Alexandra Hansen got answers from five researchers on the question: Is it possible to catch up on lost sleep? 4 minutes to read.
  • Alec Ryncavage summarizes cybercrimes and penalties, by state. 10 minutes to read the whole thing, but more useful to use as a quick reference.

Working and the Workplace

  • Alicia Sasser Modestino summarizes research into recent trends in unemployment: when the economy is good, employers loosen their education and experience requirements. 6 minutes to read.
  • Corinne Purtill reports that many companies, including Google, IBM, and Apple, no longer require a college degree—just the right combination of skills and experience. 2 minutes to read.
  • Nick Chater explains the power of following daily routines—both positive and negative. 5 minutes to read.
  • Francisco Saez tells the story of the Coding War Games, a challenge by Tom DeMarco and Tim Lister, that demonstrated the advantages of working in quiet solitude. 3 minutes to read.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of August 13 – 19

New project management articles published on the web during the week of August 13 – 19. And this week’s video: Jennifer Bridges explains how to structure a project team. 5 minutes, safe for work.

Business Acumen and Strategy

  • Greg Satell notes the pivotal role of the business ecosystem in business success and failure. Also note the impact of regional cultural differences. 5 minutes to read.
  • Aman Grover gives us a non-technical primer on 5G cellular network standards. This technology will enable a lot of other products, from autonomous cars to smart cities. 12 minutes to read.
  • Akshat Rathi reports on a significant improvement in lithium-ion battery capacity. The company is scaling up for a move from prototypes to production. 3 minutes to read.

Managing Projects

  • Elizabeth Harrin demonstrates three ways to make a Gantt chart, using Excel (with a free template), Powerpoint, and Vizzlo. 9 minutes to read.
  • Peter Milsom expounds on the value of appreciative inquiry and root cause analysis. 3 minutes to read.
  • Jim Lovell gets heretical: How to avoid holding a project status meeting (while still collecting actionable information). 5 minutes to read.
  • Andy Silber tells us how to write status reports that will actually be read. 3 minutes to read—let’s see if he’s right.
  • Laura Barnard continues her Impact PMO series with some thoughts on communicating with purpose. 7 minutes to read.
  • Michele Iurillo summarizes failure modes from a recent Gartner survey on why business intelligence projects don’t take off. 5 minutes to read.

Managing Software Development

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from agile data to silent estimating to why a good product backlog resembles an iceberg. 7 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
  • John Barton maintains that development managers need to actively manage the code review process. 7 minutes to read.
  • Dave Prior interviews Johanna Rothman and Mark Kilby on communication tips for distributed teams, based on their recent team writing experience. Video, 19 minutes, safe for work.
  • Tom Cagley answers the FAQ: what do I do with incomplete stories when the sprint is over? 3 minutes to read.
  • Kiron Bondale contemplates defect handling within a sprint, as a function of a Definition of Done. 2 minutes to read.
  • Angela Riggs describes the key responsibilities of the QA engineer as three hats. 8 minutes to read.
  • Will Fanguy points out a few common and preventable failures in preparing and resenting prototypes. 3 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Julia Milner and Trenton Milner found that most managers don’t know how to coach their direct reports. The good news is that they can learn. 5 minutes to read.
  • Dmitrii Susloparov lists tools, techniques, and processes for managing efficient virtual teams. 7 minutes to read.
  • Art Petty recommends reducing the threat level when proposing an organizational change. 5 minutes to read.

Research and Insights

  • Ephrat Livni reports on research indicating that the perception of whether an event is lucky or unlucky can influence other outcomes—luck begets luck. 5 minutes to read.
  • Mantra Malhotra lists the ways in which artificial intelligence is transforming mobile technology in some not-always-obvious ways. 4 minutes to read.
  • The folks at Cossack Labs explain how to detect massive database breaches and leaks using poison records, honeypots, and other fake data elements. 7 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Mike Griffiths recaps some insights into employee motivation and purpose after reports that terminated Tesla workers still love Elon Musk and Tesla. 5 minutes to read.
  • Suzanne Lucas points out a gray area in recruiting: you can’t discriminate in hiring based on age, but Facebook allows employers to target age ranges for job seekers. 3 minutes to read.
  • Weihan Wang shares five observations from the point of view of a job applicant. Talent is scarce and even brief interactions with the hiring firm leave lasting impressions. 7 minutes to read.

Enjoy!