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Posts filed under 'Project & Process Management'

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    February 5, 2014

    5 Tips for Helping Agile Teams Avoid “Squirrel Moments”

    Here’s some great advice for any team trying to maintain focus.

    The “squirrel moment” arrives unexpectedly.  The instant message pops up with a question about functionality in a recently deployed release.  A new production support ticket arrives from the customer service team.  The product owner stops by for an ad hoc brainstorming session about a new feature that might be added to the backlog.   And the entire team stops what they are doing in order to meet the squirrel.  The squirrel provides welcome relief from the drudgery...Continue reading

    By Ron MontgomeryPosted in Project & Process Management on February 5, 2014

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    January 9, 2014

    Agile Organizations: 4 Communication Tips For Decentralized Teams

    Making Agile Teams Work in Different Buildings, Time-Zones & Countries

    One on one communication is a cornerstone of agility.  The Agile Manifesto devotes one of its four values and two of its twelve principles to this type of communication by stating the following: Value: “We have come to value individuals and interactions over processes and tools.”   Principles Supporting That Value: “Business people and developers must work together daily throughout the project.” “The most efficient and effective method of...Continue reading

    By Ron MontgomeryPosted in Project & Process Management on January 9, 2014

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    December 4, 2013

    Agile Transformation – Five Tips for Getting Team Members On Board

    Like any change initiative, agile transformations take time.

    The agile movement values collaboration among team members, self-organizing teams, and technical excellence. In theory, one would think that everyone would want to be part of an agile team. It just doesn’t work that way in practice and some team members will need additional support to become comfortable with this change. Following are five tips for getting team members on board with agile.   Tip #1 – Listen First   In the world of software development, most people have developed...Continue reading

    By Ron MontgomeryPosted in Project & Process Management on December 4, 2013

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    October 29, 2013

    Ripple Effects of Agile at Scale-5 Potential Impacts to Your Business

    Great advice for organizations preparing large-scale agile transformations.

    As organizations get started with agile, the impacts are small – similar to dropping a pebble in a swimming pool.  The effects are noticeable to the teams that are beginning to work on agile pilot projects, but imperceptible to the rest of the organization.  As an organization attempts to scale agile to an enterprise level, the impacts are similar to tossing a boulder into the swimming pool.  The ripples can be quite substantial and far-reaching.  These ripples are strongest close...Continue reading

    By Ron MontgomeryPosted in Project & Process Management on October 29, 2013

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    September 17, 2013

    PMO 2.0 - Positioning for Success in an Agile World

    Questions every PMO should be asking.

    The Program Management Office (PMO) function became common in the late 1990s as companies were launching projects to prepare for Y2K challenges.  These PMOs had the mission of coordinating and sometimes controlling these myriad Y2K initiatives.  These PMOs carried out their missions and moved on to additional challenges such as SOX, large-scale accounting, CRM, and ERP implementations.  They have established themselves as the “go-to” source for project management information and...Continue reading

    By Ron MontgomeryPosted in Project & Process Management on September 17, 2013

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    August 1, 2013

    User Stories – Simple, But Not Easy

    Define your needs so that Agile Software Developers will act.

    User stories are used in agile software development to provide concise descriptions of desired system functionality.  They are written from the perspective of the person who will use the functionality and they utilize the following structure:   “As a (list the type of user), I want to (identify the desired outcome) so that (identify the user’s intent).”  An example would be “As an investor, I want to see the unit value of my mutual fund so that I can see if I am...Continue reading

    By Ron MontgomeryPosted in Project & Process Management on August 1, 2013

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    July 9, 2013

    Agile Metrics – Measure What Matters

    If your goal is to produce working software, then your metrics must answer 4 key questions.

    By Ron Montgomery, Management Consultant & Owner, OnPoint, LLC The late management guru Dr. Peter Drucker said, “What's measured improves.”  As with most of Dr. Drucker’s observations, there is a lot of wisdom packed into this brief sentence.  All too often, organizations measure things that do not really matter and ignore those things that do matter.  In developing agile metrics, we need to begin with what matters.    One of the agile...Continue reading

    By Ron MontgomeryPosted in Project & Process Management on July 9, 2013

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    May 14, 2013

    Scrum Master: A New Career Path For Agile Processes & Organizations

    Things to consider before becoming a Scrum Master or adding one to your organization.

    By Ron Montgomery, Management Consultant & Owner, OnPoint, LLC The role of Scrum Master is often misunderstood, and for good reason.  According to the Scrum Alliance, “The ScrumMaster is a facilitative team leader who ensures that the team adheres to its chosen process and removes blocking issues.”  In most organizations, particularly those just beginning their agile journey, there is no exemplar or precedent for such a role.  How common is it for a leader to ensure...Continue reading

    By Ron MontgomeryPosted in Project & Process Management on May 14, 2013

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    April 11, 2013

    Agile Success Factors: The Product Owner Role

    3 Success Factors for Product Owners Plus The Support Needed From Senior Management

    By Ron Montgomery, Management Consultant & Owner, OnPoint, LLC Scrum, an agile software development process for managing software projects, specifies only three roles: 1) Product Owner; 2) Scrum Master; 3) Developers / Testers The role of Product Owner is critical however not always fully appreciated.  For years, those of us who develop software have decried the lack of user involvement in our projects.  The same can be said for any major development project no matter what the industry...Continue reading

    By Ron MontgomeryPosted in Project & Process Management on April 11, 2013

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    March 26, 2013

    Creating An Agile Culture: Top 3 Challenges Empowered Teams Face

    Is your company culture aligned with rapidly changing business needs?

    By Ron Montgomery, Management Consultant & Owner, OnPoint, LLC Agile organizations must overcome cultural challenges to enable teams to function, foster creativity and move quickly.  When Project Managers face organizational challenges they can slow down, or even worse, fail; it takes a companywide approach to succeed.  These challenges were recently published in a survey titled “The State of Agile Development,” where more than 4,000 respondents from various software...Continue reading

    By Ron MontgomeryPosted in Project & Process Management on March 26, 2013

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