project management


Multitasking Is Evil

Multitasking is often seen as a desirable skill—you can buy books or pay to attend courses that will teach you how to do it—but it is a surprisingly debilitating idea.

Clarke Ching's picture Clarke Ching
Keep Both Oars in the Water - Tips for Modeling Requirements

If you hear that someone doesn't have "both oars in the water," you know he's out of control, he doesn't "get it," or he's going in circles. Why? To move forward in a rowboat, you need both oars in the water to steer and to gain speed. In this week's column, Mary Gorman explains how this concept applies to modeling requirements.

Mary Gorman's picture Mary Gorman
Transitioning to Agile in the Middle of a Project

Every team transitions to agile in different ways, and this column is one of those stories. But what makes this one different is that the main character, a project manager, is transitioning her team to agile in the middle of a project. From this story, Johanna Rothman details a potential survival guide for any project manager and team embarking on the same journey.

Johanna Rothman's picture Johanna Rothman
Receptiveness to Change

Everyone responds to change differently, whether managers know this or not. A good leader knows this, and doesn't hurt the morale of a team by expecting them to act a way that their incapable of, or that feels unnatural to them. Naomi Karten brings this all to light in this article.

Naomi Karten's picture Naomi Karten
Test Managers-Start Managing!

Some things in life, like death and taxes, are a given. Software development teams face their own givens: Project schedules will always change and certain teams will suffer because of these changes. If that's to be expected, then why haven't most managers done anything to save their teams from undue stress and abuse? In this column, Dion Johnson explains that we've got to take care of our teams, or else we'll never see the end of team abuse.

Dion Johnson's picture Dion Johnson
Weathering the Storm

The economy, like the weather, is a complex system that cycles through good times and bad. Dark economic clouds are brewing on the horizon. Predictions of inflation, stagnant growth, crushing debt, tightening credit are in the forecast. Payson Hall tells us how to weather the storm.

Payson Hall's picture Payson Hall
May I Take Your Temperature?

This column isn't for you; it's about you. Linda Hayes wants to find out what it takes to be successful in the testing profession these days—if such a thing is really possible. Too many good ideas, such as incentive and recognition plans, have backfired. Linda feels there are a few good practices out there, but she needs your help to find them.

Linda Hayes's picture Linda Hayes
Savvy Shopping for COTS Software

Remember the last time you went grocery shopping without a list and you had your toddler, your mother, or spousal unit with you? Or when you stopped by the beer store and found yourself standing in the chip aisle, dazed and confused by the choices? Did you get what you needed? Did you spend as much money as you expected to? Mary Gorman discusses the value of starting out with clear requirements when shopping for commercial off-the-shelf software.

Mary Gorman's picture Mary Gorman
Eight Reasons Retrospectives Fail

Retrospectives work for most teams, yet some teams are convinced that retrospectives will never work for them. When Esther Derby came across several of these teams for which retrospectives had failed, she questioned why and discovered eight common reasons for those failures. In this column, she details these eight reasons and offers solutions for each one.

Esther Derby's picture Esther Derby
Applying the Inverted Pyramid to Agile Development

Modern day reporters tend to write their articles using what is known as the "inverted pyramid" style. They start with the most important information in the first sentence, followed by the next most important, and so on. This format not only gives the reader the biggest bang for his buck as he reads it also gives both the reporters and their editors huge flexibility in their uncertain and fast-changing environments. Clarke Ching shows how modern software development techniques use the same idea to give customers the best bang for their buck—in equally uncertain environments.

Clarke Ching's picture Clarke Ching


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