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Software Project Management Stories
Tombstones in a graveyard The Premortem: Planning for Failure

While a postmortem, or retrospective, is done after a project is completed, a premortem is done before the project starts as a way to imagine that the project failed and to explore what went wrong. You list every possible thing that can go wrong, then devise solutions to the most probable risks—before you need them.

Naomi Karten's picture
Naomi Karten
Brick wall with sponsor on one side and project team on the other Can Your Project Succeed without Your Sponsor On Board?

Project managers are tasked by sponsoring executives to complete projects successfully and provide timely communication if barriers arise. But what should a project manager do if the sponsors are the biggest barrier? If you can’t get the answers you need, is it a good idea to make your best guess and proceed?

Payson Hall's picture
Payson Hall
Person adding a square to a grid of sticky notes, photo by Kelly Sikkema How to Prioritize Tasks and Do Only the Work That Matters

When you’re working on multiple projects at a time and everyone is breathing down your neck for results, it’s difficult to separate wants from needs. You have to be smart about task prioritization. Here are four ways to break through the noise and make sure you’re focusing on the work that really matters.

Kristin Savage's picture
Kristin Savage
Consultant talking to a software professional Wisdom from Consulting: Getting and Vetting Advice

When you hire a consultant, they may appear to have a wealth of experience and knowledge—and may actually have it. But accepting their advice without question is dangerous. Here are some good practices to keep in mind when you're receiving advice, including asking questions, exploring alternatives, and analyzing risks.

Payson Hall's picture
Payson Hall
Road sign warning of going the wrong way Signs of a Project Headed for Trouble

Projects rarely get in trouble suddenly. More often, the descent into trouble is gradual, and the signs are easy to miss—but they are there. If you detect any of these potential signs of possible failure, it would be wise to take steps sooner rather than later to address them and get the project back on track.

Naomi Karten's picture
Naomi Karten
Team member estimating a project 5 Factors That Could Be Making Your Project Estimates Go Wrong

Why do our estimates for a project or a testing phase so often turn out wrong? Whatever causes underestimation, we clearly do not learn from experience, as we repeatedly make estimation errors, despite feedback showing previous errors. It’s a chronic problem. What could be driving these errors? Here are five factors.

Andrew Brown's picture
Andrew Brown
group at table The World Has Product Ideas—and So Can You

From where do organizations—both big and small—get product ideas? Most often, pioneers and revolution makers have ideas that are homegrown, but today the market is such that the world has ideas. Our industry has plenty of patterns, trends, and ideas to work on and augment.

Mukesh Sharma's picture
Mukesh Sharma
Project manager working with software clients Project Management in Any Industry

Software teams in niche industries may think they require a project manager with expertise in their domain. Good project managers can anticipate and address the primary considerations for any project, regardless of industry, but if you encounter a skeptic, here’s a generic template you can use to pitch any project.

Payson Hall's picture
Payson Hall