Archive for the ‘business’ Category

Picture this…

I don’t much care having my picture taken, having a face for radio and all that. Finding a photographer who is both highly skilled and easy to work with just adds to the challenge of getting a decent professional photograph. Well, I’ve found a photographer that I can recommend highly: Kiki Lavine (Kelly Photography). The […]

That Isn’t What I Expected

Adverse surprises during a team driven project are about as welcome as whooping cough at a glassblowers convention. Minimizing the opportunity for surprises comes down to how well expectations are defined at the very beginning and how well they are managed during the course of the project. Unidentified expectations are like landmines in the project […]

The Value of “Good Enough”

Any company interested in being successful, whether offering a product or service, promises quality to its customers. Those that don’t deliver, die away. Those that do, survive. Those that deliver quality consistently, thrive. Seems like easy math. But then, 1 + 1 = 2 seems like easy math until you struggle through the 350+ pages […]

Agile Team Composition: Generalists versus Specialists

In a previous post, I described several of the shortcomings with planning poker, particularly when the tool is used in a context that includes more than just the developer’s shop. Estimating levels of effort for a set of tasks by a close knit group of individuals well qualified to complete those tasks can efficiently and […]

Creativity Under Pressure

[In the fall of 2013, I completed a course on Coursera titled “Creativity, Innovation, and Change” presented by Drs. Jack V. Matson, Kathryn W. Jablokow, and Darrell Velegol at Pennsylvania State University. It was an excellent class. At the end, they invited the class (How many tens of thousands of us?) to submit short essays […]

Essential Graphics #2

Big Data Edition Those on the Big Data Bandwagon say you can never have too much data. But if you do have too much to manage and are overloaded, you can always jump off the wagon and push. Related PostsA Modest Proposal: 2.1 A Modest Proposal: 2.0 Dot Com 2.0: The Revenge QA and Testing […]

Parkinson’s Law of Perfection

C. Northcote Parkinson is best known for, not surprisingly, Parkinson’s Law: Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion. But there are many more gems in “Parkinson’s Law and Other Studies in Administration.” On a re-read this past week, I discovered this: It is now  known  that  a  perfection  of  planned  […]

Agile Planning Poker has a Tell

As an exercise, planning poker can be quite useful in instances where no prior method or process existed for estimating levels of effort. Problems arise when organizations don’t modify the process to suite the project, the composition of the team, or the organization. The most common team composition for these these types of sizing efforts […]

Accountability as a Corporate Value

My experience, and observation with clients, is that accountability doesn’t work particularly well as a corporate value. The principle reason is that it is an attribute of accusation. If I were to sit you down and open our conversation with “There is something for which you are going to be held accountable.”, would your internal […]

Agile 2.0

The IT radar is showing increased traffic related to The-Next-Big-Thing-After-Agile. The hype suggests it’s “Agile 2.0” or perhaps “Ultra Light Agile.” This also suggests the world is ready for something I’ve been working on for quite some time: Ultimate Ultra Extreme Lean-To-The-Bone Hyper Flexible Agile Software Development Methodology. The essence of all previous methodologies distilled […]