J.D. Meier's Blog

Software Engineering, Project Management, and Effectiveness

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  • Blog Post: Why Have a Strategy?

    To be able to change it. Brilliant pithy advice from Professor Jason Davis’ class, Technology Strategy (MIT’s OpenCourseWare.)
  • Blog Post: The Most Effective CIOs in 2014

    I was reading The Fruits of Innovation: Top 10 IT Trends in 2014 , by Mark Harris. Harris had this to say about the evolving role of the CIO: “In the end, these leaders are now tasked to accurately manage, predict, execute and justify. Hence, the CIO’s role will evolve. Previously, CIOs were mostly technologists...
  • Blog Post: Stephen Kell on Value Realization

    This is a guest post by Stephen Kell on Value Realization and how it can help IT organizations stay relevant through changing times, as well as become a strategic partner within the organization.  For background, Stephen is a Microsoft Enterprise Architect with extensive experience in Telecoms,...
  • Blog Post: Martin Sykes on Value Realization

    This is a guest blog post from Martin Sykes. Martin has been involved with Enterprise Architecture and IT Strategy for 15 years and is today a coach in Microsoft Service’s Enterprise Strategy Centre of Excellence . He’s also known for his use of visual storytelling techniques and is one of the authors...
  • Blog Post: Cognizant on the Next Generation Enterprise

    As a strategist, I need to stay on top of how the world of business is changing, especially from an IT perspective.  The world of business is changing faster than ever.   Changes are happening in the ways we work, business models and processes are evolving, customers are changing what...
  • Blog Post: Steve Ballmer Quotes

    This is my roundup of Steve Ballmer quotes. I wanted to gain new insight into what Ballmer is really about.  I find that quotes arranged in meaningful buckets can help tell a story and provide a new lens.  In fact, I was actually surprised by what I ended up with.  I anticipated a focus...
  • Blog Post: The Power of Values

    “Rather than love, than money, than fame, give me truth.” -- Henry David Thoreau Values are the ultimate lightening-rod.  They bring people together, or divide them apart. If you don’t get how much values shape a company, from the people they hire to the people they fire, check out Video interview...
  • Blog Post: The Collaboration Economy

    Is collaboration the new competitive advantage?  Possibly.   I do know that those at work that pair up on things, and combine their capabilities can outshine those that go it alone.  And, I do see how people with better networks tend to have an easier time making their ideas happen...
  • Blog Post: Now Available: Trends Page at Sources of Insight

    One of the most important things I learned long ago is the power of trends, and how they can help you anticipate.  Now, each year, as a habit, I put together a serious and significant roundup of trends.   Here are my trends collections at your fingertips: Trends (If you read nothing else...
  • Blog Post: Mark Bestauros on Value Realization

    This is a guest post by Mark Bestauros on what he’s learned about Value Realization at Microsoft.   You can think of Value Realization as simply the value extracted from a process or project.  Mark is the Microsoft IT Principal Business Value Realization manager, and a member of the Microsoft...
  • Blog Post: Business Value Generation is the New Bottleneck

    “Creating value is an inherently cooperative process, capturing value is inherently competitive.” -- Barry J. Nalebuff I remember back in the day when prototyping solutions was the biggest bottleneck.   It could easily take many months to prototype a working solution that would address the...
  • Blog Post: Lean to Drive Portfolios, Agile to Optimize How You Work

    I was reading a nice little eBook on Opportunities and Challenges with Agile Portfolio Management . Here’s the part that caught my attention: “In her report, Visitacion suggests organizations adopt Lean to drive their portfolios and Agile to drive their activities. ‘Lean supports the disciplines necessary...
  • Blog Post: 3 Ways to Accelerate Business Value

    I was talking with a colleague recently about the following question: “How do you accelerate business value?” One of the key challenges in today’s world is accelerating business value.   If you’re implementing solutions, the value doesn’t start to get realized until users actually start to...
  • Blog Post: Business Techniques in Troubled Times: A Toolbox for Small Business Success

    "If you see a bandwagon, it’s too late." -- James Goldsmith I’m really focused on helping businesses large and small succeed.  Times are tough.  I’ve been reading a lot of books on business skills and techniques.  The latest book I read is pretty hard-core.  And exactly...
  • Blog Post: How NOT To Make Money Online

    I mentor several folks on how to make money online, either because they are trying to supplement their income, or take their game to the next level, or simply trying to reduce the worry around losing their job.   An interesting pattern is that many of the folks that I know that make a second...
  • Blog Post: 7 Ways to Take an Outside-In View of Your Group

    I was helping a mentee take a new view on their business, so they could transform their business to compete in a new arena.   Here are the 7 ways I outlined for them to get a better view on their business to shape significant change: What are the key deliverables that the company cares about...
  • Blog Post: Elizabeth Edersheim on Management Lessons of a Lifelong Student

    I’m always on the lookout for the best insight and action you can use for work and life.  I especially enjoy when I find somebody who is truly a thought leader, a giant in their space. After all, I’m a big fan of helping everyone “stand on the shoulders of giants.” Elizabeth is a giant (actually...
  • Blog Post: Diversification, Coordination, Replication, and Unification

    Your operating model is determined by your choices around how you handle integration and standardization for your business processes.  Your choices around your operating model can dramatically influence and impact your ability to compete in the market.   A clear operating model decision...
  • Blog Post: Trends for 2013 at a Glance

    Is your city smarter than a 5th grader?   This is a serious and significant post everything from Smart Cities to the top 4 mega-trends shaping technology for the next 10 years.  It’s the key trends for 2013 at your fingertips: Trends for 2013 – The Rise of the Entrepreneur If you’ve ever...
  • Blog Post: Best Business Books List, Version 2

    One of my most important lists, is my Best Business Books list.  It’s where I round up all of the best business books I’ve read and put them in a single list at your finger tips.  Sure there are lots of lists of the best business books, but this list is unique.   It’s organized by...
  • Blog Post: The Microsoft Story

    “The best way to predict your future is to create it.” – Peter Drucker What is the Microsoft story?  Is there more to the story, than a “lost decade”?  (BTW – if you were a developer during the time, you probably experienced some of the most intense transformations … *wild ride*, feels more...
  • Blog Post: Rebranding

    How do you rehydrate, revitalize, or renew a brand? I thought that a post on rebranding would help people get a new lease on life.  I see people hold on to dead brands, launch fizzle brands, and kill brands by being all things to all people.  I see this happen to individuals and their personal...
  • Blog Post: Outsourcing with Skill: Three Types of Outsourcing Relationships

    While reading the book, Enterprise Architecture as Strategy , by Jeanne W. Ross, Peter Weill, and David C. Robertson, I came across their section on outsourcing. I wish I had their frame for looking at outsourcing models long ago.   On the Microsoft patterns & practices team, we regularly...
  • Blog Post: Business Books

    "People are known by the company they keep; companies are known by the people they keep." -- Bill Gates I’ve revamped and swept my business books collection.   My business books collection is a rich set of the best business books that you can use to change your game.  They are...
  • Blog Post: Portfolio Management

    How do you manage your portfolio of IT investments?  Do you have a mental model for portfolio management?   Here is an example: While there are a lot of ways to manage a portfolio, I find the frame above to be highly effective.  It’s from the Cranfield School of Management in the...
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