New PM Articles for the Week of March 18 – 24

New project management articles published on the web during the week of March 18 – 24. And this week’s video: Mike Clayton explains business acumen: what it is, why it’s valuable, and how a project manager can work to develop business acumen. This is what is needed in order to become a trusted adviser to your sponsor, key stakeholders, and executive decision makers. 5 minutes, safe for work.

Business Acumen and Strategy

  • If there were a Winter Olympics of global politics, Brexit would be the Luge. Here is the status, as of Friday; as of Sunday, a petition to scrap Brexit has over 5 million signatures. 4 minutes to read both. The wrong business strategy for where this finally lands might prove catastrophic.
  • Patrick Walsh provides his analysis of the California Consumer Privacy Act. 6 minutes to read. And Spencer Feingold notes that few companies subject to the law are ready to comply; another 5 minutes.
  • Asha Saxena notes that GAAP accounting standards do not permit data to be capitalized on the balance sheet; however, data is nonetheless a corporate asset. 7 minutes to read.

Managing Projects

  • Glen Alleman listed over 250 links to the presentations, briefings, journal papers, and articles on increasing the Probability of Project Success (PoPS) he’s authored over the years. Quite a stack!
  • Elizabeth Harrin tells us how to address current issues from the lessons learned log. You have one of those, right? 4 minutes to read.
  • Jennifer Bridges explores a critical decision: if a project is failing, do we end it or push on through? Video, 6 minutes, safe for work.
  • Andy Jordan looks at what a PMO should do, and what it shouldn’t 7 minutes to read.
  • Cornelius Fichtner interviews Andy Burns on making the PMO leaner and more agile. Podcast, 32 minutes, safe for work.
  • Dale Howard shows how to use ad hoc grouping of tasks in MS Project. 3 minutes to read.

Managing Software Development

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from winning agile management trends to what data-driven means to contrasting Dow Jones Industrial Average members Microsoft and General Electric. 7 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
  • John Gillespie reminds us that metrics which are easy to collect are not necessarily the metrics that matter. 3 minutes to read.
  • Paul Grizzaffi points out the technical challenges you’ll have to overcome in order to run your automated tests in parallel. 6 minutes to read.
  • Dave Kearney builds a case for prototyping as a means for achieving alignment between the designers, developers, and customers. 4 minutes to read.
  • Kristin Jackvony justifies extensive testing of the validation applied to user inputs. Boring but necessary! 4 minutes to read.
  • John Demian explains metric-based alerting, for those using Amazon Web Services. Somewhat technical, but the vocabulary lesson is valuable. 7 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • The Forbes Insight Team and PMI explain how the C-suite can best support the transformation of the project management office. 3 minutes to read.
  • Peter Diamandis observes that traditional higher education, including the MBA, is losing its relevance and then calls our attention to what is replacing it. 9 minutes to read.
  • Chris Cook helps us look at delegation as actively assisting in someone else’s professional development. 5 minutes to read.
  • Tom Cagely continues his series on “guardrails” as a tool to maintain alignment with organization goals and objectives. Here is part 4; about 4 minutes to read both.

Research and Insights

  • Michael Grothaus recommends eight steps to reduce our exposure to digital data collection by Facebook, Google, and whoever else makes us nervous. 6 minutes to read.
  • Ananya Bhattacharya reports on a survey of US HR professionals and hiring managers indicates that souring foreign talent is an important part of their strategy. 3 minutes to read.
  • Paula Boddington shares her thoughts on the need for and possible elements of a baseline code of ethics for artificial intelligence. 14 minutes—long, but a thoughtful read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Peter Yang convinces us that slides are a poor form of communication—written narratives are where the enlightenment’s at. 3 minutes to read.
  • Adriana Girdler coaches us on the do’s and don’ts of meetings. Video, 5 minutes, safe for work.
  • Sarah Feldman reports on the results on a survey of what people find distracting at work. Just a minute to read.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of March 11 – 17

New project management articles published on the web during the week of March 11 – 17. And this week’s video: Harry Hall walks us through two very simple methods for conducting a qualitative risk analysis. 4 minutes, safe for work.

Business Acumen and Strategy

  • Nicolas Bloom and colleagues report on their survey of 7,500 business executives on the UK on Brexit as an uncertainty event. The impact is already evident. 6 minutes to read. Side note: Ireland is experiencing a boom in passport requests as more people living in the UK realize how difficult it will be to travel for business.
  • Hines Vaughn contrasts the California Consumer Privacy Act with the GDPR and notes a difference in consent—opt-in versus opt-out. 4 minutes to read.
  • Mihnea Moldoveanu finds a root cause for why AI underperforms business expectations: we don’t translate business problems into computational business problems. 4 minutes to read.

Managing Projects

  • Mike Griffiths teaches us how to create the truly great charter your project deserves. 10 minutes to read.
  • Becca Bruggman tells us all about what technical program managers do all day. Yup—been there, done that. 8 minutes to read.
  • Audrius Zujus prepares us to manage a project that includes virtual reality technology development. 14 minutes to read.
  • Mike Clayton explains another term of art: value engineering. Video, 5 minutes, safe for work.
  • Elizabeth Harrin describes the PMI-SP scheduling credential and shares her opinion of a prep course for it. 6 minutes to read.

Managing Software Development

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from practices adoption to leadership health checks to being done with customer discovery. 7 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
  • Johanna Rothman contemplates alternative ways of getting close enough to the customer to create value. 3 minutes to read.
  • Karlo Smid presents a concise, value-oriented definition of a software bug. “Remember that design and architectural errors are bugs, too.” 2 minutes to read.
  • Roger Swannell suggests thinking of velocity as a product measurement, rather than a team 2 minutes to read.
  • Henny Portman reviews Introduction to Disciplined Agile Delivery, by Scott Ambler and Mark Lines. 3 minutes to read.
  • Camilo Gomez shares some actions we should take to improve intercultural communications when outsourcing software development. 7 minutes to read.
  • Tony Ho Tran covers the pros and cons of the hamburger menu. You know: that little icon on phone apps that resembles the Chinese character for numeral 3. 12 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Kiron Bondale says that transparency is necessary but not sufficient: we must be responsibly 2 minutes to read.
  • Syed Moize explains emotional intelligence in the context of project management. 6 minutes to read.
  • Tom Cagley began a series on the value of behavioral constraints, using the metaphor of guardrails. 4 minutes to read; 3 minutes for part two.

Research and Insights

  • The U. of Washington promotes a new website by two professors challenging us to identify which of two photos was generated by artificial intelligence. Just what we needed—more fake people. 3 minutes to read.
  • Hemel Vasavada Gill and Chakib Labibi summarize their research with Alexa users and their adoption curve for the Alexa voice interface. 8 minutes to read.
  • Yana Yelina presents short descriptions of several machine learning trends being followed by MIT professors and researchers. 5 minutes to read.
  • Olivia Goldhill reports that neuroscientists were able to predict decisions by monitoring brain activity a full 11 seconds before the subjects announced them. 3 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Siva Prasad rounds up the most in-demand IT skills and certifications, from project management to DevOps to Big Data. 9 minutes to read.
  • Jack Vale considers the pros and cons of Email as the primary means of workplace communications. 4 minutes to read.
  • Dan Rockwell describes the coolest exercise in giving feedback I’ve ever heard of. 2 minutes to read.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of March 4 – 10

New project management articles published on the web during the week of March 4 – 10. And this week’s video: Harry Hall explains the difference between qualitative risk analysis and quantitative risk analysis. 4 minutes, safe for work.

Business Acumen and Strategy

  • Eshe Nelson observes the damage the UK has already inflicted on itself, no matter what sort of Brexit scenario actually comes to pass. 2 minutes to read.
  • Greg Satell traces the evolution of artificial intelligence from system to transformational ecosystem. 5 minutes to read.
  • Martin Zwilling tells us how to void some of the unintended consequences of using artificial intelligence for business purposes. 3 minutes to read.

Managing Projects

  • Elizabeth Harrin tutors us on project resource management—the ultimate guide. Agilistas, remember: “resources” doesn’t just mean “people.” 9 minutes to read.
  • Mike Griffiths tells about a project that involved a lot of uncertainty, change, and conflicting interests. One methodology does not fit all. 7 minutes to read.
  • Keith Baxter describes a ten-step approach to kicking off the risk management process for your project. 12 minutes to read.
  • John Goodpasture explains the project balance sheet—a depiction of the balance between what is the responsibility of the project manager and the business sponsor. 3 minutes to read.
  • Mohamed Hesham Youssef shares some advice on getting the most value-add from the procurement process. 4 minutes to read.
  • Joel Carboni reflects on the PRISM methodology (PRojects integrating Sustainable Methods), noting that it’s not just about being green; it’s about managing the impact of what we manage. 3 minutes to read.

Managing Software Development

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from the agile-industrial complex to the state of cynefin to strategy maps. 7 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
  • Johanna Rothman just finished her series on managing Agile transformations. This is her summary, with links to each article in the series. Total time for the series is about 9 minutes.
  • Li-Hsuan Lung suggests that product owners take an approach analogous to managing a personal investment portfolio. 4 minutes to read.
  • Thomas Sugar collects insights from designers at seven top companies on how to run a focused, productive design meeting. 12 minutes to read.
  • George Krasadakis counts out eight steps for defining a minimum viable product. 7 minutes to read.
  • Dave Prior interviews Melissa Boggs, the Scrum Alliance’s new Chief Scrum Master. Podcast, 28 minutes, safe for work.

Applied Leadership

  • Lila MacLellan summarizes key points from President Obama’s interview at the Experience Management Summit, talking about making tough decisions. 4 minutes to read.
  • Bob Frisch and Cary Freene suggest that the first decision a group should make is how they will make decisions. 3 minutes to read.
  • Pawel Brodzinski challenges the way we assess whether a candidate would be a good “cultural fit.” 4 minutes to read.

Research and Insights

  • Ed O’Brien shares the findings of his research into how much information we use to make decisions. TLDR: Less than you think. 6 minutes to read.
  • Tom Cagely notes that the wrong approach to measuring productivity can give rise to counter-productive behavior by both leaders and employees. 3 minutes to read.
  • Timothy Aeppel reports that US companies installed more robots last year than ever, except in the auto industry, which seems to have reached saturation. 2 minutes to read.
  • Nicholas Christakis contemplates the ways that artificial intelligence and human-like robots might change the way we humans relate to each other. 10 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Tae Yoo puts the need for perpetual learning into perspective: The Fourth Industrial Revolution is here, and the pace of job skill disruption is increasing. 3 minutes to read.
  • Nancy Settle-Murphy lists her key a-ha takeaways from The Feedback Fallacy, by Buckingham and Goodall. It’s a behavior-changer! 5 minutes to read.
  • Sharlyn Lauby shares her rules for managing Email. 3 minutes to read.

Enjoy!