How to improve teams, execution and project management.

Framing the Landscape

At Microsoft, we use the term "frame" or "framing a problem" in the context of project management. You might hear somebody ask, "what's the frame?" or "how have you framed the problem?" A Frame is simply a way to partition a problem. The heart of a frame is coming up with a context to understand the dimensions that matter and figure out how to prioritize and scope. One way teams often frame a space is by building a catalog of user stories and then organizing them into themes.

Adding People to Late Projects Makes Them Later

Adding people to late projects makes them later.  This can be counter-intuitive.  In Requirements-Led Project Management: Discovering David's Slingshot, by Suzanne Robertson and James...

How To Cure Optimitis

How do you cure optimitis?  Optimitis is an unhealthy, overly optimistic, unrealistic agreement to solving a problem.  It ignores the tradeoffs.  In Secrets of...

Vision Scope Template

At patterns & practices, we use Vision Scope milestones to sell management on how we'll change the world. Knowing the vision and scope for a project is actually pretty key. The vision will motivate you and your team in the darkest of times. It gets you back on your horse when you get knocked off. The scope is important because it's where you'll usually have to manage the most expectations of what you will and won't do.

Make a List of the Jobs to Be Done

How do you create an effective work breakdown structure?  A Work breakdown structure (WBS) is a powerful tool for improving your project...