Observations

Leadership and project management in a typical agile team

In my last article I claimed that you can have an agile project manager who ran agile projects.  But the projects I described did not involve "typical" agile teams. So now I want to show that a project manager can work well with a typical agile team. Let me start with a simple question Can… Continue reading Leadership and project management in a typical agile team

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Observations

True confessions. I was an agile project manager

I was once an agile project manager.  In fact I did it more than once. If that is not shocking enough then maybe I should also confess that I have coached, trained and enabled others to be agile project managers. In this article I will share my experience of being an agile PM without a… Continue reading True confessions. I was an agile project manager

Agile development · Observations

Which is more important: clear requirements at the start or good collaboration?

I have been struggling with how to improve our development team output lately.  We have managed to get 20% to 40% faster with better quality over the last couple of quarters so I am pretty happy with that.  We have  flip-flopper (er experimented) with better requirements and modeling before a sprint or lighter up-front requirements… Continue reading Which is more important: clear requirements at the start or good collaboration?

Arguing · Idea management

The dark art of politics – do you need values or a brand to win battles?

Some people believe that if you are evil then you have no values and that you will be good at office politics, but that if you are good then you will have strong values and be really bad at office politics. I believe that regardless of whether you are good or evil, you will be… Continue reading The dark art of politics – do you need values or a brand to win battles?

Arguing · Decisions · Leading change · Reflection

The dark art of office politics for IT leaders (part one – why is it stressful?)

Apparently office politics is a horrible thing that other people do. But many of the emerging IT leaders I speak to get told they need to be better at "soft skills" and "influencing at a senior level".  What this often means is get good a politics. Sadly a lot of office politics seems to involve… Continue reading The dark art of office politics for IT leaders (part one – why is it stressful?)

Agile development · Implementation · Observations

Going live on agile projects – where is Machiavelli when you need him?

Niccolò Machiavelli is famous for saying things like: “At this point one may note that men must be either pampered or annihilated. They avenge light offenses; they cannot avenge severe ones; hence, the harm one does to a man must be such as to obviate any fear of revenge” I will let you be the… Continue reading Going live on agile projects – where is Machiavelli when you need him?

Implementation · Risk

A prophets of doom workshop

In the past I have used some pretty dodgy approaches to defining risks in a project, from formal approaches like fault tree analysis through to informal approaches like "the evil genius" and "an international standard for being scared". So this article is not really a new one.  It is more a combination of evil geniuses… Continue reading A prophets of doom workshop