New PM Articles for the Week of March 26 – April 1

New project management articles published on the web during the week of March 26 – April 1. And this week’s video: Seth Godin suggests that we can benefit from thinking backwards—flipping the point of view on which our assumptions are based. 19 minutes, safe for work.

Must read!

  • Christian Stewart notes some significant data privacy concerns for this of us who use Google’s services and products. 5 minutes to read. Nervous yet?
  • Todd Haselton tells how to download a copy of everything Google knows about you. 3 minutes to read, much longer to download. And if this doesn’t creep you out:
  • A 2016 memo by Facebook VP Andrew Bosworth acknowledges that the company’s relentless pursuit of growth via data collection could get people killed. Ethics matter, even when you’re popular. 8 minutes to read.

Established Methods

  • Kailash Awati provides a very detailed tutorial on using a Monte Carlo simulation to calculate a distribution of probable completion times, using a simple project with four tasks and three-point estimates. 20 minutes to read, but well worth it.
  • John Goodpasture extracts some key principles from Nate Silver’s book, The Signal and the Noise: why so many predictions fail – and some don’t. 2 minutes to read.
  • Elizabeth Harrin reviews SaaS project resource management TeamDeck. 5 minutes to read.
  • Katrine Kavli gives us a crib sheet on test plans, useful for everyone from project managers to end users recruited for UAT. With templates! 2 minutes to read.
  • Dmitriy Nizhebetskiy explains how (and why) to create your own project management templates, rather than download one from some PM site. 4 minutes to read.
  • Brian Anthony O’Malley recommends a few ways to make your status reports more effective in a way that promotes your personal brand. 5 minutes to read.

Agile Methods

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from agile ecology to scaling with Lean and DevOps to problematic management principles. 3 minutes to read, 7 outbound links.
  • Brendan Connolly expands on Test Driven Development to provide an entry point for testers to perform their QA—start with objectives. 4 minutes to read.
  • Joe Colantonio interviews Michael Bolton on rapid software testing. Podcast, 38 minutes, safe for work.
  • Gojko Adzic notes that as more SaaS applications run in complex combinations, we will need to do more testing in the production environment. 7 minutes to read.
  • Pete Houghton explains how he found a bug—not by testing conformance to specifications, but by testing conformance to expectations. 2 minutes to read.
  • Martin Fowler announces the second edition of “Refactoring.” 7 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Alexander Maasik curates his weekly list of leadership articles, from the importance of self-improvement to improving your KPI’s to the difference between marketing, advertising, and branding. 3 minutes to read.
  • Mike Clayton points out the top priorities for project leaders, using the acronym LEAD. 10 minutes to read.
  • Marcia Reynolds explains the difference between convincing and influencing. 4 minutes to read.
  • Kiron Bondale notes that psychological safety must be cultivated one person at a time.

Technology, Techniques, and Human Behavior

  • Daniel Bourke notes that we may have already invented artificial general intelligence. Maybe we just haven’t noticed. 5 minutes to read.
  • David Nield shares eleven tell-tale signs your accounts and devices have been hacked. 8 minutes to read.
  • Dan Kopf charts the history of the scatter plot (OK, that was nerd humor—so sue me). 3 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • John Yorke philosophizes on feedback—one can be the beneficiary of feedback or the victim. 5 minutes to read.
  • Francisco Saez explains why you need a daily action plan to let you focus on what’s important. 3 minutes to read.
  • Laura Guillen reports on recent research that casts serious doubt on the existence of a “confidence gap” between men and women. 5 minutes to read.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of November 6 – 12

New project management articles published on the web during the week of November 6 – 12. And this week’s video: Ken Schwaber and Jeff Sutherland discuss the history of Scrum and the newest update to the Scrum Guide, just released this week. 55 minutes, safe for work.

Must read (or Listen)!

  • George Paliy provides an overview of the GDPR, including obligations of organizations that collect and control personally identifiable information and the rights of the people whose data has been collected. 8 minutes to read.
  • Kevin Coleman answers the rhetorical question: does IT strategy have a future? Isn’t technology now an integral component of business strategy? 4 minutes to read.
  • Mike Griffiths explains the impact that the recent release of the PMBOK Guide 6th Edition and the Agile Practice Guide will have on those studying for the PMP, PMI-ACP, and CAPM. 3 minutes to read.

Established Methods

  • The BlacksmithGlen Alleman introduces Integrating Program management and System Engineering, edited by Eric Rebentisch. Sounds interesting, just a minute to scan.
  • Mike Agnello shares ten rueful project aphorisms. If they weren’t all true, I might have laughed at some of them. 5 minutes to read.
  • John Goodpasture quotes from Agile Testing by Lisa Crispin and Janey Gregory on the reasons to use an automated to track problem reports. 2 minutes to read.
  • Dmitriy Nizhebetskiy takes us on a deep dive into project integration management. 5 minutes to read.
  • Mike Clayton gives us the history and use of the PERT Chart and compares it to CPM. Video, 5 minutes, safe for work.
  • Harry Hall answers our questions about the PMI-RMP (risk management professional) credential. 2 minutes to read.

Agile Methods

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from an Agile periodic table (Mendeleev was Agile?) to the impact of GAAP on Agile adoption to an AMA with Steve Portigal. 2 minutes to scan, 7 outbound links.
  • Henny Portman points out what has been changed in the newest update to The Scrum Guide. 2 minutes to read.
  • John Yorke reflects on whether it is more effective to teach Agile methods or the Agile mindset? 4 minutes to read.
  • Dave Prior interviews Andrew Stellman and Jenny Green on their new book, Head First Agile: A brain-friendly guide to Agile and the PMI-ACP. Podcast, 29 minutes, safe for work.
  • Shreehari Narayana tells how his organization adopted Scrum, with bullet points organized under the Principles described in the Agile Manifesto. 7 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Cesar Abeid and Traci Duez starting a new interview series on how we can achieve insights into our own behavior. Podcast, 26 minutes, safe for work. Welcome back, Cesar—we’ve missed you!
  • Leigh Espy describes five styles of effective listening and when to apply them. 6 minutes to read, but take a few extra minutes to digest.
  • Judith Humphrey teaches a few straightforward, emotionally intelligent techniques to be a better listener and a more effective influencer. 5 minutes to read.
  • Derek Huether recommends that everyone in the company should understand what metrics drive the business and what behaviors they encourage. 3 minutes to read.

Technology, Techniques, and Human Behavior

  • Adam Shostack reflects on the key takeaways from Collin Greene’s Fixing Security Bugs. 3 minutes to read.
  • Elizabeth Harrin explains why we need tags and a data taxonomy and how to use it to categorize the data you collect during a project. 5 minutes to read.
  • Roy Agababa reports on the ways that the insurance industry is (and soon will be) using data analytics to transform business and service offerings. 5 minutes to read.
  • Kong Yang tutors us on microservices—from the technology to the business decisions to be made. 5 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Kiron Bondale sees computer-assisted project management as not only a near-term development but another aspect of diversity in the workplace. 2 minutes to read.
  • Lisette Sutherland highlights a few “up and coming” tools for remote workers. Podcast, 8 minutes, safe for work.
  • Seth Godin points out that we talk differently when the speakerphone is on. Louder, for sure. Just a minute to read, but the self-consciousness will linger.

Enjoy!

New PM Articles for the Week of April 11 – 17

New project management articles published on the web during the week of April 11 – 17. And this week’s video: Crazy Russian Hacker explains that we’ve been splitting firewood wrong all these years. “Safety is number one priority.” Spasibo, moy drug …

Must read!

  • Donald Charles Wynes suggests an interesting way to identify risks: pretend the project is over, and you’re trying to analyze why it failed.
  • Mike Clayton recommends eight techniques for identifying risks. I especially like Brainwriting and Pre-Mortem.
  • Andy Jordan points out another source of risk: a change in leadership.

Established Methods

  • Harry Hall shares a checklist that should help you understand your project, which is the first step in managing it.
  • Glen Alleman presents the Project Breathalyzer: should your project even be on the road?
  • Women Testers has released the April edition of their quarterly online magazine.
  • John Goodpasture contemplates managing schedule slack, based on a TED talk by Tim Urban on procrastination. Just 14 minutes, safe for work.
  • Elizabeth Harrin reviews Simon Moore’s book, “Strategic Portfolio Management.”
  • Elise Stevens interviews Emma Arnaz-Pemberton on how PMO’s can become trusted partners to the business. Just 16 minutes, safe for work.

Agile Methods

  • Alistair Cockburn gives an excellent talk, “The Heart of Agile.” Just 50 minutes, safe for work.
  • Joshua Taylor makes a good point: designers shouldn’t focus on code – they should focus on the business.
  • Henny Portman returns from class with a nice summary of Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) 4.0.
  • Emanuele Passera begins a series on Kanban, with a brief introduction to the terminology.
  • Angela Wick explains the difference between use cases and user stories, and why you should use one or the other but not both.
  • Sandeep Paudel posts a brief user story FAQ. Part one of two.

Applied Leadership

  • Cameron Conaway gets a few ideas about vision from Patti Sanchez, Chief Strategy Officer at Duarte, Inc, a “visual storytelling company” in Silicon Valley.
  • Suzanne Lucas, the Evil HR Lady, explains why hiring is so much more difficult than you might expect.
  • Liane Davey tells us how to deal with chronic complainers.
  • Art Petty explains how to succeed in high-pressure conversations.
  • Allen Ruddock contemplates the nature of motivation.

Pot Pouri

  • Bruce Harpham gives us a comprehensive approach to winning that next promotion.
  • Project Journal has rounded up 30 of the best interview questions to ask of applicants for a project management position.
  • Derek Huether explains how to triage meeting requests.
  • Thomas Carney summarizes six highly regarded productivity systems, and identifies roles that they might work best for (and not).
  • Seth Godin makes the (quality) case for not using free software.

Enjoy!