New project management articles published on the web during the week of June 11 – 17. Beginning with this week, I’ve made some changes to the topic headings. Without a doubt, Agile methods are now firmly established, so rather than artificially differentiating them, I’ll try another approach—distinguishing between managing projects and managing software development. I’ve also renamed the first and fifth sections. I think these labels will be more meaningful but let me know if it needs further tweaking. And this week’s video: Elizabeth Harrin interviews Simon Harris on how to thrive as an “accidental” project manager. 22 minutes, safe for work.
Business Acumen and Strategy
Craig Walker, an attorney with lots of experience in mergers and acquisitions, points out some of the potential pitfalls. 4 minutes to read.
Deena Zaidi reviews three big data breaches that we first heard about in 2017, even though they might have happened years before. Lesson learned: the coverup is more embarrassing than the breach. 5 minutes to read.
Dave Gershgorn reports that Amazon has already begun automating its white-collar decision-making jobs. 2 minutes to read.
Johanna Rothman tries to visualize the organizational constraints that affect our projects. 3 minutes to read.
Anthony Mersino explains why most project managers don’t make good Scrum Masters. Yes, it’s a generalization, but there might be something to it. 7 minutes to read
Jerry Doucette shares his assessment scorecard for entering consulting / coaching assignments. It can help to understand the organization before you try to change it. 5 minutes to read.
Kiron Bondale observes that “traditional” funding models don’t work as well for agile delivery. 2 minutes to read.
Leigh Espy gives us a tip for keeping multiple projects all moving forward. 3 minutes to read, plus a 2-minute video, safe for work.
Renee Adair concludes her series on six current trends in project management. 2 minutes to read.
Managing Software Development
Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from metrics that matter to good and bad pressure to why ‘Yes’ doesn’t scale. 7 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
Ian Mitchell addresses something not found in the Scrum Guide: who sends out the meeting invitations?
Daniel Elizalde interviews Rich Mironov on his four laws of software economics and his advice to IoT product managers. Podcast, 43 minutes, safe for work.
Tamás Török gets six expert opinions on testing distributed systems—both methods and tools—and how their architectures drive their methods. 11 minutes to read.
Michael Bolton answers the rhetorical question: which test cases should I automate? 4 minutes to read.
Emma Lilliestam describes a way to integrate security requirements with regression testing. 3 minutes to read.
Alexander Maasik curates his weekly list of leadership articles, from teaching the stars of tomorrow to an ambitious person’s take on work-life balance. 3 minutes to read.
New project management articles published on the web during the week of May 7 – 13. And this week’s video: Chris Croft explains the difference between program evaluation and review technique (PERT) and critical path method (CPM) diagrams. Less than 3 minutes, safe for work.
Walter Frick summarizes the corporate strategy alternatives of developing a “moat,” or barriers to imitation, and setting a pace of innovation that others can’t match. 3 minutes to read.
Brandon Vigliarolo reports that researchers in the US and China are finding ways to insert messages for digital assistants like Siri into white noise. No hacks in the wild yet, but … 3 minutes to read.
Terena Bell defines cyber resilience—think continuity of operations during a data breach or cyber-attack. This is going to be a critical success metric for a lot of projects, going forward. 4 minutes to read.
Mike Clayton details the steps to create a robust project risk culture. 10 minutes to read.
John Goodpasture contemplates applicability of the firm fixed price contract, as stipulated by the public sector, for work using Agile methods. 4 minutes to read.
Kaleigh Moore examines four trends that are transforming project management. 5 minutes to read.
The folks at Clarizen give us some guidelines on when we should insert milestones in our project plan. 3 minutes to read.
Brad Egeland describes seven big technical advances—from Tupac to Elon—that we should see impacting our projects over the next few years. 5 minutes to read.
Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from ‘agile’ as social technology to not-invented-here syndrome to epic corporate innovation failures. 7 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
Roman Pichler tells us why product owners need to take on a very focused leadership role and leave the rest to the people in the other Scrum roles. 4 minutes to read.
Jesse Fewell maps the career progression from Scrum master to Agile Coach. Video, 7 minutes, safe for work or you can read the transcript in about 4 minutes.
Johanna Rothman examines the challenge (for some teams) of knowing when to release all the value they’ve created. Yes, it’s about done. 2 minutes to read.
Keith Hogan describes “skinny” Agile, as an organizational approach to the adoption of selected practices. 15 minutes to read.
Yuval Yeret gets into the details of limiting work in progress in Scrum by using Kanban concepts and techniques. 4 minutes to read.
Henny Portman reviews The Agile Enterprise, by Mario Moreira. 4 minutes to read.
Alexander Maasik curates his weekly list of leadership articles, from why entrepreneurs start companies to jobs to be done to managing priorities. 5 outbound links, 3 minutes to read.
Tony Schwartz tells us how to deepen, widen, and lengthen our perspective to better think about complex problems. 4 minutes to read.
Hank van der Merwe shares a few tips to help us stop overcomplicating leadership. 3 minutes to read.
Peter Landau has compiled ten classic quotes about management and offers his thoughts on each one. 8 minutes to read.
Technology, Techniques, and Human Behavior
Greg Satell debunks four pervasive myths about innovation. “Don’t look for a great idea, find a good problem.” 5 minutes to read.
Carey Fletcher shares her experience with developing a central testing team in a scaled Agile environment. 3 minutes to read.
Erik Dietrich shoots down five myths about test-driven development. 5 minutes to read.
Working and the Workplace
Liana Brinded recaps research by Robert Half that found employers lose their top candidates if the interview process drags on for too long. 2 minutes to read, interesting graphic.
Craig Brown looks at teams that go through the Tuckman stages of team development—forming, storming, norming, performing—and then stay together. 3 minutes to read.
Faisal Hoque poses three questions that can help you determine your next step in career development. 3 minutes to read.
New project management articles published on the web during the week of April 30 – May 6. And this week’s video: Mike Clayton explains the acronym ITTO, which refers to inputs, tools, techniques, and outputs, and why it takes up so much of the PMBOK. 4 minutes, safe for work. And two pictures from Bisbee Arizona, courtesy of Steve Miller—Thanks!
Avery Phillips notes that ransomware is here to stay. And paying the ransom may not be as damaging as the loss of trust. 3 minutes to read.
Bhaskar Chakravorti observes that, while the GDPR might seem like a good template for data privacy, not all countries agree that regulation is the best solution. 7 minutes to read.
Youyou Zhou analyzes the data, finding that far fewer international students are coming to the United States for an education. 2 minutes to read.
Niansheng Chu tutors us on Failure Mode and Effects Analysis, a structured approach to finding the risks inherent in a design or process, with examples. 8 minutes to read.
Suzanna Haworth gives us a deep understanding of the RACI chart and various alternatives. Also, a template! 15 minutes to read.
Sylvia Gindi does a deep and thorough dive into project deliverables and explains why a milestone isn’t a deliverable. 10 minutes to read.
Elizabeth Harrin examines five common roadblocks to success encountered by many (most?) projects and how to move them off the road. 4 minutes to read.
Brad Egeland also identifies five common causes of project failure and how to avoid them. 6 minutes to read.
John Goodpasture goes back to Nate Silver’s new classic, “The Signal and the Noise,” to frame Bayes Theorem as an iterative process. 2 minutes to read.
Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from decisions under uncertainty to minimum-viable-whatever to “other” customer success metrics. 2 minutes to read, 7 outbound links.
Bisser Ivanov begins a series he’s calling Kanban 101. 3 minutes to read.
Johanna Rothman explains the difference between minimum viable experiment (MVE) and minimum viable product (MVP). 5 minutes to read.
Ilia Pavlichenko describes The Speed Boat Game—an interesting product metaphor to get clients to talk about their pains and perceived value of a product. 3 minutes to read.
Marie-Eve Trempe provides a quick tutorial on velocity for Scrum teams and how to measure it and use it.
Alexander Maasik curates his weekly list of leadership content, from why entrepreneurs fail to tackle big problems to your imagination as a superpower. 3 minutes to read, 5 outbound links.
Jory McKay presents 5 key goal-setting exercises for high-performing teams, as practiced at places like Google, LinkedIn, DropBox, and more. 15 minutes to read.
Mary Jo Asmus says that leading means staying out of the weeds—if you love the work, maybe you shouldn’t be a manager. 2 minutes to read.