New PM Articles for the Week of January 22 – 28

New project management articles published on the web during the week of January 22 – 28. And this week’s video: Harry Hall explains the concept of risk velocity—the relative amount of time you have until an identified risk manifests as an issue—and how to include it in your qualitative risk assessment. 4 minutes, safe for work.

Must read (or Listen)!

  • Connor Forrest describes Amazon’s new retail artificial intelligence technology, called Just Walk Out. It’s the brains behind Amazon Go—a convenience store with no checkout line. 3 minutes to read.
  • Devin Coldewey reports on the surveillance technology behind Amazon Go. 6 minutes to read.
  • Dan Smiljanic reveals the results of Binfire’s analysis of the status of project managers and the profession, with global statistics and a survey of 1080 PM’s in the USA, UK, Europe, Israel, India, and Japan. 7 minutes to read and very enlightening.

Established Methods

  • Glen Alleman tutors us on physical percent complete—also called, “Are we done yet?” in the context of an integrated master plan and integrated master schedule. 8 minutes to read.
  • John Goodpasture answers a key criticism of Monte Carlo simulations: you don’t really know what distribution should apply. 3 minutes to read.
  • Dmitriy Nizhebetskiyoffers a practical guide to identifying project risks. 6 minutes to read.
  • Mari Rengarajam Deenadayalu tutors us on managing project scope in the presence of complexity and uncertainty. 5 minutes to read.
  • Mike Clayton curates an excellent list of the best books about communication skills (and there are several types of skills represented) for project managers. 10 minutes to read.

Agile Methods

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from the state of Agile engineering to SWARMing to why the velocity of experimentation is worth measuring. 3 minutes to scan, 7 outbound links.
  • Gojko Adzic says that tools like Kanban and Scum boards are only mirrors—they reflect where you are. To make them actionable requires context and experience. 8 minutes to read.
  • Johanna Rothman shares some ideas for helping your team finish all of their work inside a sprint. 4 minutes to read.
  • Vrushali Umbarkar coaches us on why, when, and how to make the move from Scrum to Kanban.
  • Renee Troughton lists the seven habits of highly effective Agile sponsors. 9 minutes to read.
  • Pete Houghton describes the gamification of automated software testing. 5 minutes to read.
  • Kate Paulk lists ten bad reasons to not hire additional software testers. Some of these are funny because they’re both terrifying and common. 8 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Walter Frick describes three ways to improve your decision making. 4 minutes to read.
  • Scott Berkun says that there are several ways to say “no,” and as leaders and decision-makers, we should master all of them. 5 minutes to read.
  • Ryan Ogilvie correlates a shift in the weekday with the number of reported software incidents with a shift in the weekday that changes are moved to production. 4 minutes to read.
  • Art Petty points out the liberating power of accountability. 2 minutes to read.

Technology, Techniques, and Human Behavior

  • George Krasadakis describes the ways in which the economy—from transportation to insurance—will be impacted by autonomous cars and trucks. 6 minutes to read.
  • Fergus from TechRogers created an infographic that shows all of the sensors and other components that make up a self-driving car.
  • Seth Godin describes four postures to consider when working with a good designer, from “I know what I want” to “I’ll know It when I see it.” Just over a minute to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Leigh Espey takes us through the steps for dealing with a difficult team member. 4 minutes to read.
  • Tom Cagley helps you to decide whether you need a coach or a mentor. 3 minutes to read.
  • Elle Griffin shares a nifty flowchart to help you decide whether to have a meeting. Maybe 2 minutes to read, if you don’t stop to giggle.

Enjoy!

New Post at AITS: The Three “Ins”

My latest article for AITS was published today: The Three “Ins” That Are Putting Our Projects Behind Schedule.

The Execution stage is where projects fall behind, and where leadership is needed the most. Plainly, it takes more than just a good project manager to overcome indecision, inactivity, and indifference but it falls to the PM to engage the team and their management throughout the project.

As always, thanks for taking the time to read my stuff.

New PM Articles for the Week of January 1 – 7

New project management articles published on the web during the week of January 1 – 7. And this week’s video: Thomas Frank recaps five lessons from “The Power of Habit,” by Charles Duhhig. Five minutes, safe for work.

Must read (or Listen)!

  • Danny Vinik gets us up to speed on alternative work arrangements. It’s more than just the gig economy: from 2005 through 2015, all net job growth in the American economy was in contingent jobs. 18 minutes to read.
  • Aarian Marshall reports that the development of self-driving cars has hit a technical wall—namely, safely coexisting with humans on the same road. 7 minutes to read.
  • Linky van der Merwe gives us a primer on corporate social responsibility. Two minutes to read, plus an extensive infographic.

Established Methods

  • Balloon SunriseElizabeth Harrin asked 32 project management thought leaders how to make 2018 a successful year for our projects. She ended up with a long article (20 minutes to read) and an e-book.
  • Mike Clayton contemplates developing our professional skills in 2018. 2 minutes to read.
  • Brad Egeland identifies five key trends we’ll see develop in 2018 and beyond. 4 minutes to read.
  • Ryan Hewitt shares his approach to planning for a workshop—he calls it the Seven P’s. 4 minutes to read.

Agile Methods

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from the State of Scrum to highly progressive workplaces to designing a bulletproof product strategy. 9 outbound links, four minutes to browse.
  • Johanna Rothman poses three questions to ask before estimating the cost of an Agile program. 6 minutes to read.
  • Glen Alleman casts a critical eye on the notion of incremental delivery. Sometimes, the customer is looking for more than just a collection of user stories. 3 minutes to read.
  • Jez Halford observes a key reason why software is often bad at whatever it was supposed to do: unconscious assumptions. 2 minutes to read.
  • Jesse Fewell notes the frequent disconnect between what we do and why we do it. Video, about 5 minutes.
  • Tim Runcie introduces us to some of the new Agile capabilities in MS Project. 6 minutes to read.
  • Henny Portman reviews Dan Miller’s new book, Don’t Spook the Herd! How to get your agile projects running smoothly. 3 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Chapel in the SkyArt Petty tells us we need to embrace—even love—challenging conversations. They all have a “use by” date. 4 minutes to read.
  • Michael Lopp shares three lessons gained from reflection: act last, read the room, and taste the soup. Code words for good advice. 6 minutes to read.
  • Kiron Bondale tells a few stories of customer service—good and not so good. Passing the buck is a recipe for not good. 4 minutes to read.
  • Gina Abudi notes that difficult stakeholders are not always behaving irrationally. 2 minutes to read.

Technology, Techniques, and Human Behavior

  • Tom Merritt reports on the top 5 technology trends to watch in 2018. Video, just under 2 minutes.
  • Neil Barton makes four data technology adoption predictions for 2018. 3 minutes to read.
  • Javier Augusto explains why people are the most important part of the innovation process. 8 minutes to read.
  • Bruce Benson reflects on the A-teams and the B-teams, noting that the important ideas don’t usually come from the ones you might expect. 2 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Lisette Sutherland curates a massive list of resources and tools for remote workers. How massive? Nearly 200 entries.
  • Will Fanguy shares a ten-step plan for eliminating distractions when working remotely. 6 minutes to read.
  • Ciara McDonnell shares an infographic on managing your energy. 2 minutes to read.

Enjoy!