Software Engineering, Project Management, and Effectiveness
Here is a map of the Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) v3. ITIL v3 is organized by ITIL stages, processes, and sub-processes. According to Wikipedia, “ITIL describes procedures, tasks and checklists that are not organization-specific, used by an organization for establishing a minimum level of competency.” You can find an explanation of the ITIL processes at the ITIL Wiki.
If you’re doing any sort of IT work, it helps to know the lay of the land. What better way to know the lay of the land of the IT landscape that to know the map of the minimum competencies that IT is supposed to perform.
Stages and Processes Here is a map of the ITIL Stages and the ITIL Processes within each.
Continual Service Improvement
Processes and Sub-Processes Here are the core ITIL v3 Stages:
Here is a map of the ITIL Processes and Sub-Processes organized by ITIL v3 stages:
Strategy Management for IT Services
Service Portfolio Management
Financial Management for IT Services
Business Relationships Management
Service Catalogue Management
Service Level Management
IT Service Continuity Management
Information Security Management
Project Management (Transition Planning and Support)
Release and Deployment Management
Service Validation and Testing
Service Asset and Configuration Management
IT Operations Control
Definition of CSI Initiatives
Monitoring of CSI Initiatives
Here is a quick map of the process groups, knowledge areas, and processes in the PMBOK (Project Management Body of Knowledge). Regardless of the PMI certification, I think it’s useful to know how the knowledge for project management is organized by experts and professionals. This will help you more effectively navigate the space, and learn project management at a faster pace, because you can better organize the information in your mind.
If you are a program manager or a project manager, the categories are especially helpful for checking your knowledge and for thinking of projects more holistically. You can also use the knowledge areas to grow your skills by exploring each area and building your catalog of principles, patterns, and practices.
Process Groups and Knowledge Areas Here is a quick map of the process groups and knowledge areas in the Project Management Body of Knowledge:
Knowledge Areas and Processes Here is a quick topology view of the Knowledge Areas and the processes:
Project Integration Management
Project Scope Management
Project Time Management
Project Cost Management
Project Quality Management
Project Human Resource Management
Project Communication Management
Project Risk Management
Project Procurement Management
Evernote tends to be my tool of choice when for Agile Results. People often ask me what I use as my Personal Information Assistant (PIA) to manage action and make things happen. Aside from pen and paper, I use Evernote and Outlook. Outlook is my calendar and email communication stream. I don’t use email to manage action because it leads to “paper shuffling.” Instead, I pluck out action items into a list. This gives me a lot of flexibility, and I either store that list on paper, or notepad, or Evernote. I focus on “outcomes”, not “tasks.” This keeps my lists simpler, my goals clear, and I avoid getting lost among a sea of tasks.
Here's my Evernote structure:
It’s simple, durable, and evolvable. It’s just folders and lists with notes. Here’s the breakdown:
In general, I don’t use tags. I'm not a fan of tags ... just simple lists. Tags and tagging require maintenance and memory to use well ... while simple folders and lists are in your face and what you see is what you get. Views do help reinforce tagging systems and make them more useful, but what I found the trick is to actually just create the simple “80/20” views to start with, and then keep that brain dead simple and allow for mess and chaos over time, with easy cleanup -- batch and sweep style.
If it’s just lists in folders, it’s extremely easy to change the system when it’s not working. While the folder structure is not perfect, it has been pretty durable for me. I’ve used this system to manage million dollar projects and distributed teams around the world, and I’ve used it just for me in very simple scenarios. The flexibility aspect is important, as is the ability to quickly tailor for your situation.
I think that’s the key though. You have to find a simple system that works for you. And if you can do the basics well, then you’re in good shape. In it’s simplest form, it’s all about having lists of outcomes and actions at your finger tip, and being able to take the balcony view, and see the forest for the trees.
My Related Posts
I’ve updated 30 Days of Getting Results based on feedback. (Special thanks to Alik Levin for his feedback and insight above and beyond the call of duty.) The site URL is simpler now and easier to share:
I wanted to clean it up and improve the experience, especially for those that are using this as their 30 Day Improvement Sprint to bootstrap the new year.
Time Management Skills Here are some of the time management skills you will learn, tune, and improve as part of the time management training:
You will learn time management tips and strategies as part of a system, each lesson can be used by itself or “better together” with other lessons.
Time Management Training Lessons at a Glance Here are the 30 Lessons at a Glance that make up the time management training:
Colleagues, friends, and family have been asking me how my book, Getting Results the Agile Way, is doing. It’s doing well. Today it was #10 on Amazon’s Best Seller’s list in Time Management.
Time Management is a great niche because time is such a unique and precious resource. How you invest your time helps shape your happiness, your fulfillment, your work life balance, and your achievements in work and life. I hope the insights and actions I’ve shared in Getting Results the Agile Way, serve you well on your journey and in your pursuit of mastering your time.
I think what makes this book unique for people is that I’ve tried to integrate as much as I could from many amazing mentors at Microsoft, my personal trials and tribulations, and even lessons from software development that we can apply to life (Think “Agile” for life or “Scrum for life” and the value of personal kanbans, timeboxing, etc.)
In related news, Getting Results the Agile Way will be featured in an upcoming article in a magazine with a reader base of three million.
Probably the biggest request I get now is training. I’m exploring different ways to share and scale training in a more effective way. I’ll be experimenting and testing approaches in the near future. While I’ve done one-off sessions and Webinars, I’d like to better package it up and productize it. I’m a fan of building information products to share and scale information and empower people.
What do great managers do? To put it simply, they bring out your best. Whether it’s fire you up or get on your path or help you overcome your personal challenges, they help you flourish.
Aside from all the managers I’ve had before Microsoft, I’ve had 14 managers at Microsoft. I also regularly mentor people from different teams, so I get exposed to a lot of different management styles and patterns. If I take a look from the balcony, what ten things do the best of the best managers do? Here’s the list …
Now it’s your turn … In your experience, what are the best principles, patterns, and practices that great managers do?
This is a mental model we often use when connecting business and IT.
The big idea is that IT exposes it’s functionality as “services” to the business. When speaking to the business, we can talk about business capabilities. When talking to IT, we can talk to the IT capabilities.
In this model, you can see where workloads sit in relation to business and IT capabilities. Business capabilities (i.e. “what” an individual business function does) rely on IT capabilities. The IT capabilities, together with people and processes, determine “how” the business capability is executed.
The beauty of the model is how quickly and easily we can “up-level” the conversation, or drill-down … or map from the business to the IT side or from IT to the business.
If you want to nail your goals for 2012, here are some guidelines, checklists, and tools to help you do it. It's a new year and fresh start, so now is a great time to start off on the right foot, or tune and prune your skills for action, focus, goals, motivation, and time management.
At the end of the day, it's these skills that will serve you for the rest of your life, in whatever you try to achieve. They are your personal tools for empowerment and impact your ability to execute. It's these skills that limit or enable you.
A Time-Management System If you don’t have a time management system, get one. Time management is the one resource that we just don’t get more of. The best we can do is invest our time well and spend more time in our values and balance our priorities. An effective time management system will help you do that, as well as balance what’s right in front of you along with your long term goals and ambitions.
Agile Results is principle-based so you can use it with any time management system you already use to get more out of it. The big idea in Agile Results is to define three wins each day, each week, each month, each year, and use these to guide your actions. Another big idea in Agile Results is to focus on Hot Spots. Think of your life as a heat map with hot spots of what matters and invest more time in what counts. The most important idea in Agile Results is to have a pattern to drive your week. In Agile Results, this is the Monday Vision, Daily Outcomes, Friday Reflection pattern. This helps you get a fresh start each week and each day, and bring out your best, while focusing on meaningful results. You can use stories to drive your day, connect to your values, and light up your life.
Guidelines, Checklists, and How Tos Here are some guidelines, checklists, and tools you can plug in to Agile Results and make thins happen. I created these the same way that I’ve written patterns & practices guides at Microsoft for more than 10 years. It’s hard-core prescriptive guidance to help you be YOUR best. As a quick example, some people I know are using the Focus Guidelines to help build coping skills for ADD and get off their medication. If you read just one thing, read the Motivation Guidelines so that you fully understand how to push your own buttons, light your own fire, and stoke the fire in your belly. Your motivation, combined with goals, focus, and taking action will give you an unfair advantage against your toughest challenges. Life’s not fair, so stack the deck in your favor
If you want to find out more about the book, Getting Results the Agile Way, and the Agile Results system, be sure to explore Getting Results.com. You can read the full book online in HTML, and there is a rick knowledge base with templates and tools to help you bring out your best and deal with changing times. Be sure to read the stories of people getting results and watch the video on how a non-profit uses Getting Results the Agile Way to help doctors and patients around the world.
Here’s to your best year – Happy New Year 2012!