Nov 05 2012
I attended the Building Business Capability 2012 Conference last week. It is a collection of different tracks that allows attendees to hear from a variety of different speakers. The tracks are: Business Rules, Business Analysis, Business Process, Business Architecture and Business Strategy and Transformation. As a BSA I was interested in the Business Analysis Forum, but also took time to attend sessions in the Business Process and Business Architecture forums. The Business Analysis Forum is the official conference of the Intenational Institue of Business Analysis (IIBA) and I attended sessions with topics ranging from how to elicit non-functional requirements to how to manage the "rock star" BAs in your organization. I attended last year's conference and felt this year showed movement forward as the BA profession becomes more mature.
Nov 01 2012
My reflections on keynotes at the Building Business Capability 2012 Conference:
Attending the International Institute of Business Analysis Building Business Capability 2012 conference felt a little bit like taking part in an evangelical seminar. The leaders were preaching to the choir. These sessions reminded me of some great tools and techniques at my disposal with a few enhancements that others had found to be useful. I appreciate these conferences because the amount of knowledge sharing exchanged helps promote the good habits analysts continually seek out.
Oct 15 2012
No not Optimus Prime, prime numbers! Someone posed the question as to why the “recommendation” of 7 members +/- 2 for a Scrum Team. Any Scrum larger than 7 members is out of the gate with a serious disadvantage, why you ask? Channels of communications… Agile and Scrum are all about the creation of high performance teams and since we have yet to evolve to the point where we can use telepathy, that means communications between team members is a critical success factor. So the question is, what does team size do to channels of communication?
Let’s say your team is made up of 4 individuals – As the Scrum Master you are managing 24 possible conversation streams (4x3x2x1=24). Grow your team by one (1) member to five and you are now managing 120 conversational streams – almost a fivefold increase. With a team of 7 members you have the staggering possibility to deal with 5,040 conversation streams.
Oct 08 2012
I was watching a football game recently that struck a chord with me. I noticed that as the quarterback took the snap from the center, the opposing team changed its assignment and morphed into a mass of confusion from my vantage point as small defensive backs rushed the quarterback while larger defensive linemen took off to cover a receiver. For those that follow football, this is completely counter-intuitive because football is traditionally made up of specialized positions in which each player has a role to play and tend to be matched up according to size, speed, and other attributes. However, as offensive players have become more versatile, the defensive players have had to adapt so that an unfair advantage does not sit solely with the offense, when a play is called. The defenses have developed schemes and tricks to fool the offense into believing that they are going one way, when in fact they are doing something totally different.
Oct 02 2012
I previously posted a blog on this topic: it provided the macros to create a column with status bubbles for each task in Microsoft Project, 2007 or 2010. This is a secondary version for those of you using the 2003 version of Project.
On a challenge from a colleague (never tell me I can't) I wrote the two macros that conclude this post. They generate and manage status indicator bubbles for every line of your Project schedule, applying special rules to roll-up lines and reporting as of any user-specified date and time.
We found that these graphical status bubbles helped less technical folks keep their eyes from crossing. And we were surprised to find another value in them: team members ran as-if reports for the next weekly status report, to find out where they needed to focus in order to stave off the yellows and the reds. This engagement with the schedule left them with a better understanding of their work and its relation to the rest of the project.