Linking the left brain and the right brain

To Change, You need to Learn AND Unlearn

The challenge isn’t learning new things. It’s unlearning old ones. Change is all but doing something differently, which requires learning something new. No problem, right? Life is learning. But there’s a flip side to change. You have to unlearn something old. You need to stop doing something you’ve learned to do. If you’re not particularly […]

Software Quality and Time-To-Market Should Never Conflict

Here’s a question that I believe generates some of the controversy around agile software development techniques versus waterfall techniques. If your team delivers fewer software features and functions but the software is higher in quality, are your user base and your company better off? Agile teams often claim to deliver better quality software. I agree […]

Velocity Is a Useful Metric But Not a Crystal Ball

I’ve criticized metrics in this blog before and I’m doing it again. I’m really a fan of metrics when they’re applied properly and interpreted correctly. Unfortunately, metrics are often misapplied and misinterpreted resulting in poor decision-making. That said, let’s take a closer look at a popular Scrum metric — velocity. Here is the definition found […]

Agile Project Management Works for Small Businesses

Guest Post I’m pleased to share this post written by the folks at Agil8. Project management systems are not methods that are just for big businesses and large-scale organisations alone. They are also suitable for smaller businesses that can benefit a great deal from these methods too. The fundamental principles of project management can be […]

Chickens, Pigs, Commitment and Teamwork

I’m sure you’ve heard the fable of the chicken and the pig as it applies to Scrum. In case you haven’t, it goes something like this: Chicken: Hey, Pig, let’s open a restaurant. Pig: Okay. What would we call it? Chicken: How about ‘Ham ‘n Eggs’? Pig: No thanks. I’d be committed but you’d only […]

Arguments About the Value of IT Are All Wrong

There are endless arguments around whether IT is a support function or a strategic office. Neither side can win the arguments because they’re both wrong. IT occupies a middle ground that’s unique in the enterprise and can’t be classified like other departments. What is Information Technology? What does an IT department do? Would you believe […]

10 Common Mistakes Account for Many Project Failures

There are many more ways to fail than ways to succeed. (Anything that can go wrong, probably will, right?) Yet most software project failures are attributable to a small set of common mistakes. Avoid these and your chances of success increase dramatically. Here’s a short list of common, but often overlooked, project mistakes. Review this […]

Estimates Don’t Matter But Story Sizes Do

I’ve read quite a few blog posts lately regarding software estimates. Should we estimate epics, stories and tasks or not? Are estimates useful to software development teams or are they a waste of time? Do estimates add value to the development process or are they inaccurate and misleading? As is often the case, the answers […]

Governance Can Suck the Life Out of Software Development Teams

Large enterprises like to centralize governance across all departments. Most large IT departments follow the leader and adopt centralized control mechanisms internally. They often establish governance entities such as program management offices, whose mission is to enforce conformance. There are good reasons for it. By approaching major projects in a uniform fashion, everything from status […]

Great Technology Isn’t Enough For Being Agile

We have a disconnect in the agile community. Agile approaches to software development are not about technology departments like Information Technology, Engineering or Research and Development. Agile development approaches are about customers, knowledge workers, and successful outcomes. This fundamental concept seems to be difficult for many companies to grasp. Or, maybe many managers and developers […]

10 Reasons Why Your Team’s Software Is Crapware

Crappy software. It’s everywhere. There is far more poorly-designed software than well-designed software. So much more, in fact, that we are literally drowning in crapware. It gives all of us in the software business a bad reputation. I hate it. You’ll find lots of information on how to build better software (just click here). However, […]

The Curse of Recurrence and Habit

Some habits are good. Others are productivity killers. Here’s one example. Someone schedules a meeting. That’s bad enough, right? And the person decides to make it a recurring meeting — every week for as far into the future as anyone can imagine. Then it gets worse. Week after week, zombies (sorry, I meant people) arrive […]

How to Do Less and Deliver More

Have you ever had a manager ask you to “do more”? Or maybe he skipped the politeness and just told you to “do more”? It usually happens after you’ve indicated that you have too much to do — too many projects, too many tasks, and not enough time. Rather than offer help, all the manager […]

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