New PM Articles for the Week of February 5 – February 11

New project management articles published on the web during the week of February 5 – 11. And this week’s video: Mike Clayton explains organizational change management, as a complement to project management—we need to be able to work in both areas. 3 minutes, safe for work.

Must read!

  • Scott Galloway makes the case for busting up Big Tech—Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google—the way earlier generations busted up Big Oil, Big Railroads, and AT&T. A long read, upwards of a half hour, but worth your time.
  • Gabriel Weinberg alerts us to the impact that Google and Facebook have on our privacy—76% of websites contain hidden Google trackers. 5 minutes to read.
  • Ben Tarnoff presents the case for and (mostly) against de-regulation of data collection, as advocated by Google, Facebook, and other tech giants. 5 minutes to read.

Established Methods

  • John Goodpasture observes that we may soon be managing project budgets denominated in cryptocurrencies. It’s time to figure out what that means! 2 minutes to read.
  • Dmitriy Nizhebetskiytutors us on creating a project communications plan. 6 minutes to read.
  • Kiron Bondale points out that the Kotter model for leading change benefits from continually injecting a sense of urgency.
  • Richard Paterson does a deep dive on writing a useful test plan, including one unusual observation—you might not need one. 9 minutes to read.
  • Michael Bolton tells us how to report progress on testing, as a story woven of three strands. 5 minutes to read.
  • Brad Egeland reminds of us the variables to account for when planning projects—even if it’s a similar project for the same customer as the last project. 5 minutes to read.

Agile Methods

  • Stefan Wolpers curates his weekly list of Agile content, from habits of organizations vulnerable to disruption to Jeff Sutherland’s Scrum@Scale Guide to creating a product wall. 3 minutes to scan, 7 outbound links.
  • Pavel Kukhnavets gets deep into the differences between a Scrum daily stand-up and a Kanban daily stand-up. 6 minutes to read.
  • Ramakanth Vallur explains how personas—a generalization of a customer segment— add value to user stories. 3 minutes to read.
  • Henny Portman reviews How to Lead Self-Managing Teams, by Rini van Solingen. 2 minutes to read.
  • Doug Arcuri finds more wisdom in his third read of The Mythical Man-Month: it is important for the team to track decisions made, as close to the code as possible. 7 minutes to read.
  • Roman Pichler describes product leadership as a collaborative pursuit of a chain of shared goals. 5 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Gustavo Razzetti describes the shift from right decisions to safe to try “Perfectionism is the enemy of change.” 5 minutes to read.
  • Leigh Espy follows up on her recent book, listing three critical reasons to run effective meetings. 3 minutes to read.
  • Derek Huether explains key performance indicators, lagging indicators, and leading indicators for product and services teams. 4 minutes to read.
  • Julie Giulioni notes that leaders who are too helpful can leave their staff helpless—or at least stunt their professional growth. 3 minutes to read.

Technology, Techniques, and Human Behavior

  • Bob Tarne has started applying Crew Resource Management techniques, which originated in the airline industry, to help Scrum teams become more effective. 3 minutes to read.
  • Dan Birch and Neal Murray identify some project planning, risk and issue identification, and status reporting analytical opportunities that might benefit from AI. 4 minutes to read.
  • John Felahi expounds on the risks inherent in data management, from ingest through usage. Data integrity should be a big part of our thinking. 3 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Traci Duez interviews Cesar Abeid, team lead at Automattic, the globally distributed company behind WorPress.com, on leading remote teams. Podcast, 52 minutes, safe for work.
  • Craig Brown updates on the Allen Curve—a finding from the 1970s that the further away someone is, the less likely they will initiate communication. 1 minute to read.
  • Stephanie Vozza lists some don’t-dos that could be making your to-do list less effective. 5 minutes to read. Yes, that was a cheap witticism, but admit it—you liked it.

Enjoy!

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!

New PM Articles for the Week of December 18 – 24

New project management articles published on the web during the week of December 18 – 24. Happy holidays to you and your families and teams! May 2018 be the year that you aspire for it to be, rather than the one you fear it might be. And this week’s video: First Aid Kit sings their homage to Emmylou Harris and Gram Parsons with Emmylou in the audience. Just over five minutes, safe for work.

Must read!

  • Jeff Stibel explains that the brain needs sleep to remove toxic waste by-products. If you go about 200 hours without sleeping you’ll probably die. Take THAT, Warren Zevon! 5 minutes to read.
  • Karen Frances Eng summarizes recent research into the way the enteric nervous system works. As it turns out, we really do think with our gut. 5 minutes to read.
  • Kristen Wong reveals the keys top being a better listener—asking questions and empathy. 5 minutes to read.

Established Methods

  • Drew Davison examines the Canadian federal government payroll replacement project as an example of a huge initiative that didn’t go as well as expected and generated more problems than savings. 10 minutes to read.
  • Jigs Gaton identifies a key learning from the Equifax breach—find the overdue tasks—and then shares a technique for flagging them in MS Project. 7 minutes to read.
  • Kiron Bondale shares a few thoughts on effective processes for risk identification. 2 minutes to read.
  • Mike Clayton lists what he feels are the best project management books, from beginner intros to specialized topics and the really technical stuff. 12 minutes to read.
  • Harold Kerzner makes his predictions for how project management will continue to evolve in 2018. 5 minutes to read.
  • Amy Hamilton looks back at 2017 and ahead to 2018 from the intersection of cybersecurity and project management. 3 minutes to read.

Agile Methods

  • Data ConversionCornelius Fichtner interviews Betsy Stockdale on the life cycle of Agile requirements, writing better user stories and testable acceptance criteria. Podcast, 31 minutes, safe for work.
  • Mike Cohn explains why Agile teams must become comfortable with a degree of uncertainty. “You need an answer, but do you need the answer before starting?” 5 minutes to read.
  • Ringo Thomas interviews Alistair Cockburn on the Heart of Agile, his updated approach to Agile methods. Video, 32 minutes, safe for work.
  • Dave Prior and Derek Huether review two student questions from students who have recently taken a CSM or CSPO course. Video, 20 minutes, safe for work.
  • Bob Martin notes, “The parallels between double-entry accounting and test-driven development deep end Plentiful.” 5 minutes to read.

Applied Leadership

  • Mike Griffiths recounts an anecdote that illustrates the need to understand the organizational culture before attempting to introduce changes.
  • Johanna Rothman concludes her series on building an organizational culture on respect and safety. 4 minutes to read.
  • Leigh Espy reminds us that project managers, as much as visionaries and dreamers, change the world. 2 minutes to read.
  • Harry Hall explores three decision-making models and explains why decision management should be part of our project management plan. 3 minutes to read.

Technology, Techniques, and Human Behavior

  • Magnifying Glass ManSuzanne Lucas considers the pros and cons of facial recognition technology in accessing (and securing) corporate data. 3 minutes to read.
  • Jaime Green describes divergent brainstorming, where the goal is quantity, rather than quality. 2 minutes to read.
  • Antonio Uncal applies two key principles from quantum physics to project management: superposition and complementarity. It’s a nerdy metaphor, but it beats that pig-and-chicken Agile meme. 4 minutes to read.
  • Connor Forrest summarizes an editorial from a Homeland Security official that attributes the WannaCry attack earlier this year (and many others going back to 2009) to North Korea. 3 minutes to read.

Working and the Workplace

  • Priya Sanjeevi Raja identifies useful techniques for managing virtual teams. 6 minutes to read.
  • Matt Plummer notes both the dysfunctional and effective approaches to feeling refreshed after the holiday season. 5 minutes to read.
  • Tiffanie Wen collates the data from job sites and recruiting experts to find the optimal time to search for a new job. 4 minutes to read.

Enjoy!