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project planning

Firefighters putting out a fire Stop Fanning the Flames of Constant Firefighting

Continually having to address unexpected problems interrupts your original sprint activities, causing stress on the team members and fanning the flames for future firefights. But with due diligence, you can lessen the need to constantly put out fires. Here are some steps that can break the cycle of work and rework.

Richard Estra's picture
Richard Estra
Man looking skeptical Beware of Success Stories

The tendency to look back and think you know what contributed to a success is called survivorship bias. It occurs when you make a decision or take some action based on past successes while ignoring past failures. That's why it's important to approach reports of successful projects with a healthy dose of skepticism.

Naomi Karten's picture
Naomi Karten
Person browsing at a bookstore Are You Forgetting a Stakeholder?

Technology allows amazing innovations to optimize business and deliver new and better services, but if you don’t carefully consider your entire user community, innovations may cost you business. When designing for stakeholders, don't stop at the obvious cases—or else you may find that you forgot an important customer.

Payson Hall's picture
Payson Hall
Software project estimation Deception and Estimation: How We Fool Ourselves

Research suggests that humans are biased, not-very-rational decision-makers. We believe we see things clearly when the evidence shows otherwise. Throw in a big dose of optimism, and it's easy to see how estimating software projects can be problematic. Our best hope is to construct diverse groups with varied viewpoints.

Linda Rising's picture
Linda Rising
Man scuba diving underwater Sunk Cost: Knowing When to Call It Quits

Acknowledging that a product isn't ready to ship may seem like a simple call—if it isn't the desired quality by the target date, why not pull the plug? But when you start considering all the effort, time, and money you've already invested, it becomes harder to make that decision. Here's a story to help you remember.

Payson Hall's picture
Payson Hall
An open notebook in front of a computer Why Project Managers Need Exceptional Writing Skills

The project manager’s role is to ensure the project is done efficiently and effectively. The modern project manager needs to have great communication skills to convey the essentials of the project, and most of this communication is done through writing. Here are some examples when good writing skills will help.

Paul Bates's picture
Paul Bates
Black swan The Black Swan Myth Actually Devalues Expertise

People love to hear how someone with no formal training solved a problem that stumped experts because they weren't tainted by years of experience. These "black swan" stories are the exception, though, not the rule, and they can be dangerous because they trivialize hard work and study. Most times, you want an expert.

Payson Hall's picture
Payson Hall
Project manager using software to improve productivity 5 Ways to Accelerate Productivity with Project Management Software

Project management software can provide great tools for any project manager who wants to maximize their team’s performance. These tools do more than store all the project-related data in one place; they can also help project managers optimize their work, distribute tasks more effectively, and accelerate productivity.

Scott Pine's picture
Scott Pine