Don’t just jump, leap

Lesson learned: Maximizing project throughput. Category: Resource management / Portfolio management. The following post is a "Lesson Learned" that comes from the analysis of the failed projects documented in the "Catalogue of Catastrophe" or from the experiences the editorial team have had working with clients around the world. The post is published here to spark discussion and help individuals and organizations think about what it takes to improve project success rates. Given the rap...
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Push and Pull

Although I’m not a great fan of taking concepts from the manufacturing sector and bending them so they can be applied to the IT sector, the idea of “push” versus “pull” processes is one that is worth considering. The concept of push versus pull comes from the field of lean manufacturing and is used to identify who in a chain of manufacturing processes is requesting work to be done. In the factory environment work is broken down into discrete processes which are linked together in a chain. Raw ma...
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Beginner’s Mind

At the recent Great Lakes Software Excellence Conference in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Lisamarie Babik of Menlo Innovations gave an excellent talk entitled “Beginners Mind”. For those not familiar with the expression, the term refers to the open and receptive state of mind that we have when we’re beginners at something. The concept is based on the observation that beginners approach things differently from those who see themselves as experts. Where beginners are receptive to new ideas, try to think...
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Mind the Gap

The translation of an organizational need into a technical solution is a technology project’s core. That translation requires detailed knowledge of the organization’s operation environment (and their desired future state) to be married up with the technical skills from which the solution will be created. The size of the gap between those two pools of knowledge is a common source of troubled projects. One project I recently observed had allowed a six step gap to form between the intended users...
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