Monthly Digest

TOP 10 Articles on Project Management in April 2020

Every month I put together my version of the best articles on project management, leadership and team building. Check out the TOP 10 articles on project management in April 2020

Trends

InfoQ team asked industry experts to share their ideas on the most prominent trends that were spotted in the software development industry in the first quarter of 2020. This resulted in the report showing what is on the rise right now. This report aims to assist project managers in making mid- to long-term decisions that will have a positive impact on their organizations and teams and help them find the practices, tools, and frameworks that will lead to better outcomes [Read More…]

Remote Team Building

The COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent shift to work from home resulted in many challenges most of the managers are facing now. One of such challenges is keeping your remote teams productive. It is easy for managers to make some mistakes along the way. In this article, the most common mistakes of newly remote leaders are listed together with an explanation of what they should do instead [Read More …]

Employees who work together in an office naturally build relationships through face-to-face interactions, meetings, lunches, and office events. However, remote teams don’t have the benefit of being able to meet face-to-face to build these relationships. Hence, companies need to facilitate these interactions virtually through team building activities and games. The author of this article suggests a step-by-step guide on how to prepare and conduct remote team building as well as gives a big list of 23 virtual activities and interactions. These activities help remote workers feel included and connected to their teams and eventually make remote teams more productive [Read More…]

Leadership

This author of this article explains how an agile approach commonly used in the software development industry, is successfully applied in other spheres of our life, where there is a lot of uncertainty. Try to guess what is given as an example? Sure, COVID-19 outbreak. It turned out that the main Scrum principles, such as empiricism, inspection, and adaptation, are very helpful when going through a crisis no one has faced before [Read More…]

This article is a short step-by-step guide on how to deal with disasters and extraordinary events on your projects, which is particularly useful during this ongoing COVID-19 outbreak. In short, as conventional rules go out the window during such a crisis, there is no standard risk management playbook for dealing with it, and you have to improvise and adapt on the fly. However, a general high-level disaster recovery plan will still come to your rescue in this circumstance [Read More…]

The author of this article argues that organizational leaders should also have regular stand-ups like meetings on the company’s coordination and strategy. And while the goal is the same — to collaboratively plan flow for the day — the questions may differ, since the levels at which leadership is working are different. You may also find the list of suggested questions for such a meeting in this article [Read More…]

Management

This is an absolutely brilliant article that may serve as a career development plan for beginner project managers. In this article, Ben Aston listed all the essential skills that a good project manager has to obtain, generously augmenting the text with useful links. I believe that this article is extremely useful for project managers of any professional level as a checklist on their way to excellence [Read More …]

This is a debunking article! At the time, Spotify made a lot of buzz with its “Spotify model,” which was considered as a new and unique way of doing a scaled Agile framework. The main principles of this model were “full-stack” teams, matrix organizational structure, team autonomy, and unique mythology and namings. This model allegedly was extraordinarily successful, which led to other companies trying to mimic it. In this article, the former coach of Spotify reveals all the weak points of this “squad model” and explains why it is unviable in reality [Read More …]

Scrum

An essential part of agile is continuous improvement. And there is a great instrument that helps this continuous improvement to happen, which is called retrospective meeting. Unfortunately, not all retrospectives are perfect. Teams often struggle to get their retrospectives just right. Sometimes it happens because the approach is not correct, other times, because team members simply don’t understand the value of this meeting. In this article, Mike Cohn describes the four most common problems with retrospectives and advises on how to overcome each problem [Read More …]

Many teams are finding that they need to adjust to a new reality amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Strategic plans lie in tatters, urgent unplanned work fills the board, stakeholders are hammering teams with requests, and routine has gone out of the window. This is a time for a Scrum Master to be pragmatic, calm, and outcome-focused: providing delivery leadership without allowing the process to get in the way. In this article, some action items are given on how Scrum masters can make themselves as helpful as possible for their teams and organizations in these trying times [Read More …]

Bonus Article

As long as most of the organizations shifted to work from home during the lockdown and quarantine, video calls have become the primary way of communication between project teams. For many people, this situation brought some benefits like saving time that was previously spent for freshening up and commuting. However, if not wasting time in traffic jams can be considered as a real benefit, not everything is that clear with dressing up. It turned out that in reality, people are looking closely at how you show up on video calls. And for managers, it is especially important to keep a good presentation of themselves even in these new realities. The author of this article shares her best tips and tricks on how to look your best on video calls because it really matters how you show up [Read More …]

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