Project Management Digest, May 2019
This is the fifth release of our monthly project management digest prepared primarily for project managers, product owners, and team leads. However, we’re looking to keep it interesting for everybody working in the IT field. The digest includes the most popular articles grouped by topics, the most discussed, controversial, and entertainment content, as well as general resources such as author blogs, educational materials, and active podcasts.
Topical articles of the month
Agile and Scrum
The fake agile: when you say you are agile because you are “using” scrum, but actually you are not agile at all.
So You Want to Be a Scrum Master? There are still many debates about the difference between the role of Project Manager and Scrum Master and this causes confusing. The article explains differences between the roles and tells about transitioning from one role to another.
What Does the Scrum Master Do All Day? Many companies can not see the value of Scrum Master activities, so they often ask them to do some additional work. Here’s a day in the life of a Scrum Master which helps you to see value in the activities the Scrum Master themself.
Recognizing the two types of Monkeys in Scrum. A useful analogy for deciding which problems you should tackle as a Scrum Master.
Six Things Your Team Wants from You as Their Scrum Master. In the article, Mike Cohn shares his experience of what most teams want their Scrum Masters to do.
5 False Hopes of Scrum and How to Fix Them. Currently, the goals and use cases of Scrum are not always presented correctly that may cause false hopes, dissatisfaction, and dysfunctions. Here’s how we can deal with this.
Defining Sprint Durations and Story Sizing. It’s daunting to define sprint durations and size stories when a scrum team is new and requirements are evolving. Here’re some practical tips which can be helpful.
Startups, productivity, and quality management
Wait A Minute. The author tells about daily routine of a project manager and provides some useful points about multi-tasking, productivity, and project success.
Sharing and Concealing Startup Ideas. At what stage it is the time to discuss and share your startup ideas and project success?
Product Ethics. An ethical product is an offering that does not cause any harm, neither to its users nor the planet. The article offers five guidelines to put product ethics in practice and create products that truly benefit their users.
The Seeds to Successful Quality Management. The author deeps into the history of Total Quality Management and reminds us that we can still learn a lot from it.
Career and leadership
Are you the product manager you really want to be? The article describes a visual framework to evaluate your current job responsibilities. It includes a link to a PM quiz: fill out the form, and you’ll get their graphical representation.
How To Get Into Product Management (And Thrive). Figure out if this role is for you, how to make the move, and what skills you’ll need to build in order to be successful.
What is Product Leadership? In a world of uncertainty, good product leadership may be the most important ingredient in building a high performing team.
How to Manage Programmers Without Losing Your Damn Mind. Managing programmers may be hard, and most books on this topics seem to be useless. But there’re exceptions. In the article, the author is giving a summary of the book “The Coaching Habit: Say Less, Ask More & Change the Way You Lead Forever” by Michael Bungay Stanier which happened to be helpful in his practice.
You are probably a victim of Crunch Culture. Crunch Culture has gotten a lot of visibility in the past few years, primarily due to the Video Game industry. However you don’t have to work in video games to be a victim of crunch culture.
The Role of Emotional Intelligence in Successful Project Delivery. The article includes a simple representation of how the five areas of emotional intelligence – self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, empathy and social skills – can be effectively integrated with the different knowledge areas.
Beyond Coding – Soft skills to avoid project failures. Though the article is focused on software developers, it will also be useful for everybody working in a team.
12 Soft Skills Expert Communicators Must Cultivate. It’s vital for professionals in any industry to be able to interact with and influence people effectively, but in none more so than communications.
Technologies and science in project management
ChatOps in Project Management. ChatOps is not a new term, at least, in the field of DevOps and product deployment. However, today’s project managers and whoever else working in a software development team can also find use of it, and many of them already do.
“Can this be done by Thanksgiving?” – Using Math to Estimate Task Durations. If you’re interested in math, read how to use it to get more accurate estimates based on the probability distribution of the time our project will take.
What I’ve Learned Working with 12 Machine Learning Startups: 8 lessons from Daniel Shenfeld who “helps companies build machine learning driven strategies, products, and teams”.
How does Cognitive Bias affect Projects and Project Management. The author provides us with a review of common types of cognitive bias in project decision making – Anchoring Effect, Confirmation Bias, Attentional Bias, and Sunk Cost Fallacy – and explains how they can affect project managers.
The future of networking. The author tells how advances in technologies such as cloud computing, artificial intelligence, and AR/VR can change networking in the future.
Most discussed or controversial articles
How do you prioritize? Join the discussion on one the project management difficulties – prioritization. What are the factors you or your company uses to prioritize work? How to you organize your backlog to make sure the important work is getting done first.
PM Role – Dealing with Stress. Reddit users are sharing their ways to deal with stress at work. Tell about your own tricks if you have any.
How do you deal with Team complacency? What would you do as a Scrum Master if you team is not showing great results, velocity is getting down, the product owner is getting concerned? Share your experience with your colleagues and companions in misfortune.
Unnatural Disaster. The author shares a real-life example of poor project management which is also a good reminder of why project managers should follow trusted methodologies.
Mockery of agile. The article is a little ironic reflection on the 12 principles of Agile Manifesto. Still, a serious content is also provided at the end of the post.
The best resources for project managers
Sachin Rekhi. The author shares his thoughts on product management & entrepreneurship in form if articles, podcasts, and video content. He has already written 125+ essays sharing lessons learned from over a decade in Silicon Valley as a product manager and startup founder.
The Practicing IT Project Manager. This blog was created for project managers, program managers, business analysts, and portfolio managers. Weekly posts include a collection of recent PM articles published on the web. Links to the articles (along with a short review and a necessary indication of the author) are grouped by topics.
Musings on project management, “an opinion page on contemporary topics in project management” by John Goodpasture. The blog is regularly updated and includes many interesting views and thoughts.
Sarah M. Hoban. The blog is focused on a wide range of topics for project managers. New articles written by Sarah M. Hoban, a certified project manager and strategy consultant, appear almost weekly.
Books and templates
Top 12 Must-Read Books for Product Managers with short review. Which of them have you read and would recommend?
285 Free Resources for Product Management. A huge collection of free templates for product managers.
Currently active PM podcasts
The Product Breakfast Club. This is the perfect podcast for those looking for a behind-the-scenes look at how products are designed, how product teams work and for those wondering how to make better products faster. Each, weekly episode is a view on the product world from 2 distinct perspectives. To date, the podcast includes 78 episodes, each lasts about an hour.
This Is Product Management. About 200 episodes from the brightest minds in product management which can be sorted by the topic, the company size, the audience, and the industry.
Inside Intercom. The podcast is focused on the latest thinking on sales and marketing, product management, startups and more. Each episode takes about 30 minutes.
ReWork. A podcast about a better way to work and run your business. The podcase consists of about 40 episodes, each about 20 minutes.
Communities of project managers
Project management discussions. Join the discussions of the latest news and actual problems with the rest of project managers from around the world.
Thank you for reading. We would be glad to know which topics and articles are the most interesting for you. Also, feel free to share your favorite resources for the next digests. Follow us on social media or subscribe to our blog not miss them.