Given a choice, most people would rather have happy, satisfied customers than angry, complaining customers. But how to create customer satisfaction is sometimes a mystery. In this column, Naomi Karten describes one person's experience that backfired and taught him some lessons.
Clarify the fuzzy front end of project planning by focusing on the overall vision. In this column, Johanna Rothman says clear project vision helps everyone involved in the project move forward better and more smoothly than a detailed project schedule. She also explains how to write succinct project visions in three simple steps.
What are the attributes of a good tester—of a great tester? As every test manager knows, identifying the right people for a test team can be a struggle. In this column, Fiona Charles describes the qualities of mind she looks for in testers, and the interview questions she asks candidates so that she can evaluate how they think.
In this article, Michele Sliger discusses why sharing the vision with the project team is so important and how this knowledge helps the team in its delivery. With examples from Walt Disney and software development, Michele explains how bringing everyone together and getting team members on the same page allows for belief in and commitment to the project, which is a must for a successful outcome.
When a man suffered a cardiac arrest on a ski slope, a medley of medical personnel from different countries and backgrounds mustered together to take charge of the man's health. Despite language barriers, they were successful in stabilizing the man. While this incident may seem to have little to do with software development, Clarke Ching sees that the makeshift emergency team shared specific characteristics found in all strong software development teams. In this column, he details these characteristics and how applying them can turn your team into a more successful team no matter how dissimilar individual teammates may be.
There's a vicious game being played daily in the lives of software developers. The rules to this game are not clear cut, and it can change its structure rapidly. If you're not careful, the game will end up controlling your work schedule for quite some time. In this column, Johanna Rothman gives a referee's point of view of this game and reveals the secrets to winning.
With the votes cast, the polls closed, and the candidates elected, we say farewell to another political season that captivated everyone in a way that we thought only the Super Bowl could. Of all the soap opera-esque drama that occurred during the general election, Dion Johnson found grassroots campaigns to be the most interesting because they generated the greatest level of success from the bottom up, as opposed to from the top down. He believes the world of software testing can learn a lot from this grassroots approach. In this week's column, Dion embarks on a grassroots campaign trail that he hopes will get any process improvement initiative elected.
It's easy to split user-experience experts and software architects into different categories and still grant them equal importance; the former deals with the façade of the software while the latter deals with the workings beneath the surface. This separate, but equal attitude changed for Jeff Patton after attending a workshop in which his eyes opened to an epiphany of holism in software development. From this enlightened moment, Jeff realized a way software development could change for the better.
"Part-timers just don't seem to fit in with the team," a manager complained to Esther Derby recently. "I do everything I can to impress on them the importance of teamwork and team spirit, but they just don't gel with the team. What can I do to motivate these people to fit in?" In this column, Esther Derby reveals the truth of the part-timers' mindset and what you can do to motivate this group.
Offshore resources have proved useful, and companies continue to try and cash in on the cost savings. But those savings might not be what you or your company expected. In this column, Linda Hayes warns that outsourcing has some pitfalls we should always look out for.