J.D. Meier's Blog

Software Engineering, Project Management, and Effectiveness

Browse by Tags

Tagged Content List
  • Blog Post: The Recipe of Great Leaders: WHY, HOW, WHAT

    “As we look ahead into the next century, leaders will be those who empower others.” — Bill Gates Seasoned leaders focus on WHAT, and then HOW. Smart leaders start with WHY. So the obvious conclusion is that the right recipe is WHY, WHAT, HOW. But that’s the surprise. The most effective leaders know the...
  • Blog Post: Improve Your Execution Excellence with Roadmaps at a Glance

    One of the ways to be awesome at work is to create roadmaps that lay out the big “projects” or “initiatives” for your team.  This helps you easily plan in a visual way, get your team on the same page, and communicate to other teams, both your impact and what’s going on. Roadmaps smash the perception...
  • Blog Post: Agile Avoids Work About Work

    I was reading a nice little eBook on Opportunities and Challenges with Agile Portfolio Management . I especially like this part on “Work About Work” and how Agile helps avoid it: “Agile software development is all about eliminating overhead. Instead of establishing hierarchies and rules, Agile management...
  • 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: Visual - Backlogs with User Input

    One of the first things to help a business to gain agility is to connect the product development to the actual user community.  A simple way to do this is to connect the backlog to user input.  If you can show the users your backlog of scenarios, and they can help you prioritize and validate...
  • Blog Post: The Innovative Team

    I’m working my way through my massive book backlog, and doing reviews as a I go along.   Yesterday, I wrote my review of Mastermind: How To Think Like Sherlock Holmes . Today, I read and wrote my review of The Innovative Team:  Unleashing Creative Potential for Breakthrough Results . It...
  • Blog Post: Kanban for Process Improvement

    A Kanban is a great tool for improving your process.  The real power of the Kanban is that you can start from where you are.  Rather than fit you into a process, you can use a Kanban to mirror or reflect your current process.   You decide how you want to visualize your work, and you...
  • Blog Post: 30 Day Improvement Sprints: The Key to Making Impact, Changing Habits, and Rapid Learning

    30 Day Improvement Sprints may just be your best friend as you start your new year.   You can use 30 Day Improvement Sprints to learn new skills, build or change habits, and amplify your impact.   They provide a simple way to apply concentrated effort in batch to accelerate your success...
  • Blog Post: Weekly Outcomes for Teams and Leaders

    Weekly outcomes are the key to execution excellence.  They support incremental progress, flowing value, and continuous learning.  I’ve written about weekly outcomes before in Weekly Outcomes: The Simple Weekly Planner and How To Lead High-Performance Teams .    Great, but now...
  • Blog Post: How To Get Things Done When You Don’t Have Enough Resources, Budget, or Capacity

    In a world of “do more with less,” don’t be a victim. Be the hero when it comes to driving and dealing with what’s on your plate. We’re all asked to do more with less, and everything was due yesterday.  We all have more things to do than there is time in the day, and we are overloaded and overwhelmed...
  • Blog Post: How We Adhered to the Agile Manifesto on the Microsoft patterns & practices Team

    A colleague asked if I could elaborate on how we adhered to the Agile Manifesto on the Microsoft patterns & practices team.    If you don’t know the Agile Manifesto , it’s a short set of sweet values, focused on building better software, flowing value to customers, while responding...
  • Blog Post: Roles and Responsibilities on Microsoft patterns & practices Project Teams

    One of the most common things I get asked, wherever I go is, “What were the team roles and responsibilities on your Microsoft patterns & practices project teams?” Effectively, there were a set of repeatable roles that people signed up for, or covered in some way.  In this case, a role is simply...
  • Blog Post: Visualize Your Workstreams

    One of the most helpful things you can do when you are doing cross-group or cross-team work, or working across multiple projects, is to show and share a simple map.  Here is an example: When people can see the map, it’s a lot easier to follow the flow of work.  It’s also easier to see intersections...
  • Blog Post: Team Execution Patterns and How the Work Gets Done

    I was white boarding and naming some team execution patterns the other day with a few colleagues.  Here's what we ended up with: Core Team "One-Man Band" + Best Efforts vTeam “Community Will Do It” Matrix Projects Just because you're on a team, doesn't mean it's teamwork. I've seen the...
  • 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: 5 Questions for Capability and Capacity of High-Performing Teams

    These are five questions I find help understand where a team is at in terms of their ability to achieve their goals effectively: We have capability do we have capacity? We have capacity do we have capability? We have capacity and capability, do we have throughput? We have capability, capacity and throughput...
  • Blog Post: Higher Profitability, Faster Time to Market, and More Value from their IT

    I’m an avid collector of proven practices for execution and getting results.  Execution is your best friend, among changing times and evolving landscapes, especially when you combine your execution with effective strategy. One of the key practices for successful companies is digitizing their core...
  • Blog Post: Why Some Companies Execute Better

    Execution is king.  That’s what one of my most seasoned mentors taught me, early on at Microsoft. I’m always on the hunt for principles, patterns, and practices that improve execution, whether at the individual, team, or organization level.  Since I’ve joined the Microsoft Enterprise Strategy...
  • Blog Post: One-Man Band vs. Pairing Up On Problems

    How you split the work is one thing.  How you team up on work is another. This is one of those patterns that can be counter-intuitive, but is one of the single-biggest factors for successful teams.  I've seen it time and again, over many years, in many places.  When I compare the effectiveness...
  • Blog Post: Portfolios, Programs, and Projects

    Execution excellence as a one-man band is one thing.  Execution excellence for a team or group is another. One of the best ways to improve execution excellence for a team or group is to map out the portfolio, programs, and projects. Having clarity on the portfolio, programs, and projects is a starting...
  • Blog Post: Visualizing Roadmaps for Execution Excellence

    One of the first things I do to get a handle on execution is to map out the work in flight in the form of a roadmap. When there are multiple teams shipping stuff, one of the best ways to improve coordination, collaboration, and planning is to make a simple roadmap. Just even putting the roadmap together...
  • Blog Post: Lessons Learned in Execution

    I’ve been thinking about execution and the lessons learned.   I’ve summarized some insights and reminders. I’ve been lucky enough to grow up with patterns & practices over the last 10 years, so I’ve been able to see what works, what doesn’t, and the difference that makes the difference...
Page 1 of 1 (22 items)