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Frank Patrick's Focused Performance Business Blog
This Focused Performance Weblog started life as a "business management blog" containing links and commentary related primarily to organizational effectiveness with a "Theory of Constraints" perspective, but is in the process of evolving towards primary content on interactive and mobile marketing. Think of it as about Focusing marketing messages for enhanced Performance. If you are on an archive page, current postings are found here.

Friday, July 25, 2003

Monthly Link-O-Rama -- As usual, my web wanderings result in more links of possible interest to my readers than I can do justice to with my own commentary, but which deserve to be shared before they age too much. For your weekend reading, I offer a handful from my "To-Blog" list...
From Feedback, at Incipient(thoughts)...
"Just because you call something feedback doesn't make it feedback; it's only so if you take the information collected and feed it back into whatever you're using to control the system on which you collect information. You have to be prepared to take action: velocity went down and we weren't expecting that, so we have to do something about how we work."
From Retiring Lifecycle Dinosaurs, by Jim Highsmith at StickyMinds.com (free registration might be required)...
"...set the timebox for the entire project. This timebox should be based on the scope, feature set requirements, estimates, and resources that result from project initiation work. Speculating doesn’t abandon estimating; it just means accepting that any estimates are tenuous."
From ROI: Really Outdated Index (link to a PDF), by Dennis Smith at CompanySmith...
"To the business leaders that use ROI or its variants of NPV, DCF, or other alphabet soup, as the pillar of their business investment process, I say you are surely missing some of your best opportunities. Your conventional processes yield conventional results. And the opportunities you are missing probably include the really big ones that could propel your company to the top of your industry."
From Gantt Charts Fail to Impress?, by Jason Charvat...
"Simply put….project managers sometimes don't update their Gantt charts when business needs change. There are too many excuses. Project managers create elaborate 1000 line Gantt charts to capture the initial project, but don't accommodate changing business needs at short notice(s). The Gantt charts then becomes outdated and does not reflect the true nature of the project."
From The Value Question, by Dale Emery...
"One of the ways I help people solve problems is to ask a seemingly simple question: If you had that, what would that do for you?"
From Reflections of a Recovering Management Accountant, by H. Thomas Johnson, co-author of the highly recommended Profit beyond Measure...
"All these encounters with people who worked outside accounting and outside economics was opening a whole new perspective to me.  It was opening my mind to a whole new way of thinking about why we are in business and what we are doing, and about how we think about these problems that I had always studied through the medium of accounting numbers.  In particular, I was beginning to be more convinced of the idea that if you do the right things--listen to the customers, listen to the voice of the process--then costs will take care of themselves.  You didn't have to worry about having a cost system to tell you how things are going.  although at first I couldn't articulate the basis for this belief, I began to be convinced of it the more I thought about it."
From TOC and Lean, by Tim Sullivan of CIRAS...
"Your focus determines your reality! Focus, is what TOC is all about. To focus everywhere is to truly focus nowhere. To focus on your true organizational constraint is to have real leverage on attainment of the goal! ...Those who say, “if we could increase sales we would have already done so", are really saying the constraint is visible as a market constraint. Focus your scarce resources there!"
These should keep you busy for now. For a little non-business diversion, there's always the Unfocused alternative.

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