New PM Articles for the Week of December 8 – 14

Ballon Over the TreesNew project management articles published on the web during the week of December 8 – 14. We give you a high-level view so you can read what interests you. Recommended:

PM Best Practices

  • Elizabeth Harrin interviews author Jeff Furman on what’s changed in the second edition of “The Project Management Answer Book.”
  • Allen Ruddock reminds us that project problems are nearly always people problems.
  • Kelsey van Haaster explains the hierarchy of laws, theories, and hypotheses, and thus why Conway’s Law is no such thing.
  • Bruce Harpham addresses a persistent form of workplace evil: reports. Well, the ones that no one ever reads are evil, if you have to prepare them.
  • Nick Pisano refines the thoughts on extracting and analyzing data across projects that he expressed in a recent post.
  • Michael Ipsaro identifies three key knowledge resources for those engaged in either procuring or delivering IT services to the U.S. federal government.
  • Ryan Ogilvie points out the need to begin a service level management initiative with the development of a service catalog.
  • Saar Bitner demonstrates the problems of using Excel for data analysis, and proposes BI software as the more sustainable alternative.

Agile Methods

  • Mike Cohn notes that, although the team needs to select their own sprint duration, sometimes the Scrum Master has to step in and make the decision.
  • Johanna Rothman suggest that there are times when you need to move away from iterations, and toward flow. Insert Kanban and Scrumban advocacy remarks here.
  • Charles Settles summarizes three popular team collaboration products, for non-traditional projects.

Looking Ahead

  • Paul Baumgartner speculates on how project management, as a practice and a profession, will evolve over the coming years.
  • Jelani Harper identifies the business drivers for the Internet of Things in 2015.
  • Brad Egeland shares his “wish list” for project management in 2015.

Risk Management

  • Glen Alleman explores managing in the presence of uncertainty, as expressed in Tim Lister’s statement, “Risk Management is project management for adults.”
  • Kailash Awati defines internally generated risks, and explains why they make risk management more difficult.
  • John Goodpasture shares the mixed metaphor of Black Elephants.
  • Eric Anderson summarizes the diplomatic aspects of enterprise risk management, as outlined in an article by Lawrence Quinn.

Being Effective

  • Adriana Girdler lists her guiding beliefs, and argues that our beliefs drive our decisions and behavior.
  • Harry Hall notes the common reasons that people avoid goals, and tells us why we should set new ones and try once again to reach them.
  • Smita Mishra advises other women: forget about a mentor, and find yourself a sponsor.
  • Rich Maltzman shares a discovery: TuneIn.com, a site which allows you to discover and listen to radio content and podcasts from anywhere in the world.

Pot Pouri

  • Scott Berkun notes that what you say is more important than what you think.
  • Adam Shostack addresses a pernicious trend: “It’s easier to snark than to contribute.”
  • Adrian Fittolani recalls how he learned to work long hours. And how he learned not

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of December 1 – 7

Just OverheadNew project management articles published on the web during the week of December 1 – 7. We give you a high-level view so you can read what interests you. Recommended:

PM Best Practices

  • Dominika Chambon provides the “how-to” for preventing scope creep and other profitability failure modes on a fixed-price project.
  • Glen Alleman puts systems engineering the in the enterprise IT domain into context, with examples of capabilities that drive the effort.
  • Kathleen O’Connor explore the difference between a project and a strategic initiative.
  • Michael Lopp on why so many software bugs are discovered in the wild, rather than in the QA lab: “Humans do strange shit to software …” Still, the QA mentality has value.
  • Ron Rosenhead notes that lesson learned are only valuable to the extent that we actually do something to implement what we’ve learned.
  • Harry Hall illustrates the strategy of risk avoidance with an embarrassing story.
  • Ryan Ogilvie takes a lesson from Star Trek on managing the risk of exceeding your scheduled maintenance down time window.
  • Nick Pisano reviews our current state of fragmented digitized project information management tools and describes what the integrated future state should be.
  • Gus Lawson shares an anecdote about helping a team improve their ability to collaborate with others, and summarizes the lessons learned.
  • Robert Martinez outlines an approach for building effective teams.

Agile Methods

  • Mike Cohn makes the case for Scrum Master and Product Owner being two different people, not just different roles.
  • Johanna Rothman asks an interesting question: Who removes your obstacles?
  • John Goodpasture gets philosophical on the relationship between retrospection and management.
  • Sameer Patil reviews several alternative models for ordering your product backlog.
  • Sam Barnes provides the transcript of a Q&A he gave on managing digital projects.

Podcasts and Videos

  • Samad Aidane interviews Todd Williams on how to buy project management consulting service. Just 35 minutes, safe for work.
  • Dave Prior sits down with Personal Kanban guru Jim Benson to talk about matching work in progress (WIP) with capacity. Part 1 is just 11 minutes, all are safe for work.
  • Cornelius Fichtner interviews Joseph Flahiff on getting your team to be a rock band! Or at least, one that rocks. Just 28 minutes, safe for work.
  • Mark Phillipy and his two brothers compare notes on the practice of leadership in their respective industries. Just 54 minutes, safe for work.

Being Effective

  • Cheri Baker ditched her Outlook, Kanban board, Evernote, Toodledo, and Onenote for … uh, a paper planner. Hey, organization is about the skills, not the tools!
  • Peter Saddington shares an infographic on how set a daily routine that will improve your effectiveness.
  • Seth Godin clarifies the relationships between goals, strategies, and tactics.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of November 17 – 23

Balloon BeyondNew project management articles published on the web during the week of November 17 – 23. We give you a high-level view so you can read what interests you. Recommended:

PM Best Practices

  • Seth Godin considers how the project scope is a bit like a bushel of apples. I guess Forrest Gump already did the “box of chocolates” routine.
  • Adriana Beal explores the Peter Drucker notion that, if you keep doing what made you successful, you will eventually fail.
  • Don Kim explains the relationship between Kaizen, an operations management incremental improvement process, and Kaikaku, a project delivering radical change.
  • Bruce Benson notes that groups get better over time, only by learning from their experience – including the negative experiences.
  • Ron Rosenhead recounts an anecdote that illustrates how stakeholder engagement can lead to real improvements.
  • Nick Pisano points out the pivotal role of the integrated master plan in complex programs and project portfolios.
  • Kenneth Darter shares his checklist for preparing to begin a really big project.
  • Pat Weaver summarizes an article he contributed to, on the topic of governance versus management.
  • Harry Hall recommends an approach to selecting and initiating projects.
  • Elizabeth Harrin reports from the Synergy 2014 conference, summarizing three presentations and some audience participation music-making.
  • Ryan Ogilvie looks at the details of implementing that IT department holiday tradition: the production change freeze.

Agile Methods

  • Pallavi Kelapure and Vikas Gupta detail their approach to applying rapid deployment principles in an ERP implementation.
  • Johanna Rothman offers some practical approaches to breaking your near-epics into smaller stories.
  • Deepak Joshi walks us through a simple example of user role modeling, to show why the technique is so useful.
  • Derek Huether proposes an innovation in backlog grooming: Progression Workshops, using a subset of the team, referred to as the Product Owner Team.

Measuring

  • Glen Alleman provides links to eight resources for methods to estimate non-trivial software projects, based on historical metrics.
  • Mike Cohn disputes the dissing of so-called “vanity metrics.”
  • John Goodpasture explains what a “figure of merit” is, and how it can be useful.
  • Rich Maltzman leverages an old post by Mounir Ajam to show that project success includes things you can’t measure until well after the project is complete.

Podcasts and Videos

  • Cornelius Fichtner interviews Jack Ferraro on the competencies required to drive strategic initiatives. Just 30 minutes, safe for work.
  • Paul Ritchie contemplates how the way we name our projects influences the way our stakeholders and team feel about them. Just 16 minutes, safe for work.

Human Behavior in Groups

  • Lynda Bourne summarizes the Cohen-Bradford “Influence without Authority” model.
  • Pawel Brodzinski provides a leader’s view of the movement to reduce the role of management, and shares Lunar Logic’s two rules that govern their approach.
  • Peter Saddington notes the holes in the “personality testing” model of candidate selection.
  • Bruce Harpham lists some proactive methods to manage project conflict, and your reactions to it.

Enjoy!