New PM Articles for the Week of August 25 – 31

Balloon Over The RoofNew project management articles published on the web during the week of August 25 – 31. We give you a high-level view so you can read what interests you. Recommended:

PM Best Practices

  • Glen Alleman channels W. Edwards Deming, to make the point that management is about prediction, and thus estimation.
  • Rachel Matthews provides some insights on selecting contingent workers, also known as “temps,” for engineering roles.
  • Bruce Benson reports on the finger-pointing lawsuits counter-filed by Oracle and the State of Oregon, from their failed Cover Oregon healthcare website.
  • Ireti Oke-Pollard offers some thoughts on how to improve software testing, by thinking like users.
  • Dave Wakeman shares his insights on leading with integrity, following recent media reports on failures of leadership in politics and sports.
  • Brad Egeland continues his series on the seven areas for project managers to focus on.
  • Patti Gilchrist applies lessons from art (Pablo Picasso) to structuring project management presentations.

Agile Methods

  • Pawel Brodzinski tells why values and principles are more important than practices, techniques, tools, and methods.
  • Jesse Fewell crunches the numbers to see which organizations are winning the “Agile certification wars.” All we are saying is give PMI-ACP a chance …
  • Johanna Rothman fine-tunes a post by Glen Alleman that management is prediction.
  • John Goodpasture applies a little physics to understand the drop in productivity, once the team hits 70% throughput capacity.
  • Venkatesh Krishnamurthy shares a “soup recipe” for building self-organizing teams.
  • Madhavi Ledalla rises to the challenge of conducting retrospectives with a distributed team.
  • Martin LaPointe tells how his family used Scrum to self-organize their recent relocation from Paris to Montreal.

Following the Trends

  • Jennifer Zaino notes that, as the digital universe doubles in size every two years, data centers are evolving rapidly for high-density, green operations.
  • Kailash Awati explores the ironies of standardization and outsourcing enterprise IT.
  • Suzanne Lucas tells the story of an inflexible management team that couldn’t manage their “flexible” star employee.

Professional Development

Podcasts and Videos

  • Michel Dion shares some feedback for you podcasters. Not the kind that blows out your speakers … the helpful kind.
  • Cesar Abeid interviews Tim Stringer on his approach to “holistic productivity,” which he developed while being treated for cancer. Just 53 minutes, safe for work.
  • Dave Prior interviews Rachel Gertz on applying psychological tools to project management. Just 18 minutes, safe for work.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of August 18 – 24

Balloon BeyondNew project management articles published on the web during the week of August 18 – 24. We give you a high-level view so you can read what interests you. And yes, I took all of these hot air balloon photos right in my own neighborhood. Privacy? Well, they seemed friendly enough. Recommended:

PM Best Practices

  • Glen Alleman imagines a conversation between a project manager, a team of software developers, and an iceberg.
  • Brad Egeland starts a new series with a look at customer satisfaction, and why it’s the most important success metric.
  • Jim Anderson speculates on the root causes of Avon’s recent SAP implementation failure. The users left the company, rather than switch? Wow …
  • Emanuele Passera applies the tenets of “locus of control” theory to project management.
  • Bruce Benson tells of the New Manager who wanted to help.
  • Ian Whittingham continues his look at project management applications for Leavitt and Dubner’s new book “Think Like a Freak.”
  • Christopher Merryman demonstrates ways that we can add visual presentation to our project reporting communications.
  • Dan Patterson makes the case for consensus-based planning.
  • Ron Rosenhead tells of the great new Projects web site at the University of Edinburgh, and asks us how much project information do we share?
  • Nick Pisano is perplexed by the academic community’s apparent lack of interest in Big Data.
  • Jen Skrabak maps Tim Ogilvie’s “design thinking” to project portfolio management.

Agile Methods

  • Mike Cohn explains his approach to massaging the backlog for a three-month vision of where the product is going.
  • John Carroll explains the Taoist basis for Agile methods. Or at least, anti-rigidity.
  • Craig Brown and Tony Ponton interview a few attendees / thought leaders at Agile Australia in Melbourne. Just 25 minutes, safe for work.

Professional Development

  • Elizabeth Harrin Interviews Terry Okoro, Chair of the APM’s Women in Project Management SIP on their 21st anniversary conference in London.
  • Dave Prior advocates for experiential learning, also known as “getting a bunch of adults to play a game together.”
  • Robert Wysocki and Joseph Matthews continue their series on methods for the Occasional PM. This episode: team structure.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of August 4 – 10

Hot Air BalloonNew project management articles published on the web during the week of August 4 – 10. We give you a high-level view so you can read what interests you. Recommended:

PM Best Practices

  • Robert Wysocki and Joseph Matthews continue their series on a framework for the occasional project manager.
  • Nick Pisano considers the challenges of integrating cost and schedule on large projects, especially for the federal government.
  • John Goodpasture details why Monte Carlo simulations are better quality than the estimates that go into them.
  • Andy Jordan tells of a “traditional” project manager’s quick adoption of Kanban.
  • Lynda Bourne builds on a pair of earlier posts with her thoughts on designing key performance indicators that actually drive performance.
  • Kevin Korterud selects “estimate to complete” as the most useful metric.
  • Susanne Madsen bullet points the rules for a perfect status report.
  • Bruce Benson finds that the best way to learn from experience is to build systems that remember (and implement) what you’ve learned.
  • Gary Nelson recalls an old friend’s old car, and wishes every project ran like a Honda Civic. And yes, that’s also an acronym …
  • Joanna Carlson analyzes the roll-out of the Minnesota Affordable Care Act site, MNSure.
  • Kerry Wills has a great metaphor for setting context for the issues we document.

Agile Methods

  • Johanna Rothman explains how to avoid three of the most common estimation traps.
  • Glenn Alleman points out the potential for disparate views of Agile, based on the domain, scope, and budget.
  • Mike Cohn notes that Agile does not mean equal, at least for the members of the self-organizing team. Be sure to read the comments – they help Mike clarify some points.
  • David Anderson continues his series on using Kanban for project management.
  • Sanjay Zalavadia explores the need for agility in embracing Agile, especially your test management strategy.

Professional Development

  • Bryan Barrow shares his vision of our transition from project managers to project leaders.
  • Penelope Trunk explains the need to balance focus and breadth, in what she calls “cross-training.” Specialization isn’t just for insects!
  • Suzanne Lucas debunks some falsehoods about networking.

Podcasts and Videos

  • Cesar Abeid interviews Carlos Flesh on managing projects in Latin America. It’s a cultural thing! Just 47 minutes, safe for work.
  • Carl Smith interviews Larissa Scordato on how she gave up her dream of being an archeologist to become a digital project manager. Just 12 minutes, safe for work.
  • Cornelius Fichtner details his personal best practices for getting the most out of attending a conference.

New Books

  • Elizabeth Harrin reviews Bonnie Biafore’s new book, “Microsoft Project 2013: The Missing Manual.”
  • Ian Whittingham finds project management lessons in the follow-up to Freakonomics, “Think Like a Freak,” by Levitt and Dubner.
  • Bruce Harpham finds project management lessons in a biography of William Shakespeare, somewhere between tragedy and comedy …

Enjoy!