Avoiding the midnight money drain

If it were easy, somebody would have done it by now. So I’ll say there is a simple, rather than an easy, fix to the problem of dumping billions of dollars into contract actions for which the primary requirement is the ability to get the funds placed on the contract by the 30th of September. […]

5 bumps you may encounter in the cloud

Cloud advocates want you to believe that you can resolve all your business challenges (let alone just your IT challenges) by moving to the cloud.  Sure, as a buyer, you’re going to exercise a degree of skepticism; but if everyone’s doing it, how can you go wrong?  Just like a real cloud journey, there are […]

How to Tell When Your Organization Really Is Ready for Change

You get a lot of articles on organizational change management.  They tend to follow the same general format: review James P. Kotter’s framework and note a couple of examples.  That’s all very well for reinforcing what we already know (but often fail to practice), but it doesn’t give us much that is new. Here are […]

Going to the cloud may not be the cure for your headaches

There is a common perception that after you make the move “to the cloud” your life will be simple, carefree and inexpensive. And so it will. If it already was simple, carefree and inexpensive. If you are being sold this vision as the cure for your chaotic business, you’d better get ready to break out […]

Failing projects? It’s all in the mind.

A good number of people have written about “recovering” projects.  It’s true that organizations often persist with projects past the point of recoverability because of the fallacy of “sunk costs”. https://www.cio.com/article/3223729/project-management/when-to-kill-and-when-to-recover-a-failed-project.html Although I think it is more about sunk egos.  Ego caused the sponsors to force this project through regardless of the business case, rough […]

Presidential quiz: Trump-like tweets as strategy statements

Today, a challenge for you: can you get a whole and useful strategy into a tweet?  If so, what are the other 120 pages of the slick $180,000 document for? An interesting article from Alan Balutis, long-time observer of the Federal scene, speculating on what the management policies of the incoming Trump Administration might be. […]

Program and project failures are about culture and accountability, not certifications

One of my heretical views is that at the highest level of PM maturity, the project managers cease to be the drivers of organizational project activity, because line managers all get the idea that you’re suppose to deliver something in return for receiving funding.  Sure, there’ll be some super-PMs for bet-the-company projects, and there’ll be […]

Scrum as a Teenager – Getting to Done

This post is a summary of Jeff Sutherland’s presentation to the DC Scrum Users Group, 21 May 2015. The slide deck is available at Jeff’s company’s website. The entire presentation can be seen on the DC Scrum Users Group Meetup site which may require you to join the group, as well you should if you are […]

Risk Management Is For Everyone. (If It’s Just IT or PM, You’re At Risk).

Risk management is not just CFO or IT.  This posting from CIO Insight (really the accompanying slideshow) starts off in the right direction, but, considering the source of the survey, it doesn’t take long to backslide to the risks posed by 3rd party software and services. Actually, it notes dismissively that this risk is not listed […]

7 different ways to run a PMO, even if you didn’t plan to

I’v found myself putting together a PMO of sorts in all my last few engagements, even though none of them really called for it.  Ironically, as you will recall from my book, Let It Simmer [see below], in some of the case in my career where I was asked to run a PMO it turned […]