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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.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Audi A4 Production -- Never thought I'd find watching robotic welders mesmerizing...


Got me wondering...

When you think of a auto plant, does what you see in your mind's eye look anything like this clean, well-lit operation?

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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Do you have a plan? -- From Seth Godin, Managing urgencies...
"...Add up enough urgencies and you don't get a fire, you get a career. A career putting out fires never leads to the goal you had in mind all along.

"...If you work in an urgent-only culture, the only solution is to make the right things urgent."
If you don't have time to fix the processes that result in fire-fighting, you may as well plan for a career in fire-fighting.

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Monday, July 30, 2007

Good Question -- Why isn't it done yet?

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Monday, July 16, 2007

Agile Task/Process Mgmt vs Project Management -- Long time blog correspondent Glen Alleman has recently acknowledged an understanding of agile software development that's "dawning on him"...
"In a recent exchange on Agile Project Management, it has finally dawned on me that when the agile software development advocates speak of project management they are not actually speaking of project management. They are speaking of managing software development..."[Be sure to read the rest...]
Yup. Pretty much a similar conclusion I came to back in 2003, when I had time and energy to ponder such things (as well as a vested interest in promoting Critical Chain Project Management and its potential as a PM overlay for agile efforts).

From January
of that year...
"While on the subject, I've been recently trying to wrap my head around the various flavors of agile software development, and what they describe as "agile Project Management" (which has more of a sound of "task" or "process management" to my ears). There's been an excellent discussion of this in the Newgrange PM discussion list, which starts in the YahooGroups archive here."
And from March...
"One of the things I think I'm seeing in Davids' book is a distinction between "agile" work methodologies and practices and project management that can wrap around them to make promises...a distinction that I've come to myself. The things that fall into the agile approach are about work/task management for a certain type of work, and don't really meaningfully address the promise-making and promise-keeping aspects inherent to project management."
Of course this assumes agreement that a major function of project management is about making promises, and understanding the health of and/or modification to those promises in an attempt to keep them.

"Agile Software Development" is a set of processes governing how software development tasks are organized and performed. But software development is only part of a project, even if it is a software development project.

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Friday, October 13, 2006

Does process matter? -- Yes, but...
"I believe that it's crucial for developers to understand more than just their team processes and start learning about business process in general. Two positive things will result from this. First, they will learn how to better interface their process with the higher-level processes. Second, they will get an appreciation for the more strategic efforts of the company and how their development teams can, and do, contribute to higher goals. This knowledge will make them more valuable to their company. For new hires working within lower-level processes, this understanding will help them quickly discover whether they are compatible with the company. There is no shame in admitting that the way you prefer, or are willing, to work is so incompatible with your personal process that neither you nor the company will benefit with you on board. I would rather know this as soon as possible, rather than having it pointed out to me at my performance review, or worse, at my exit interview.

"Process is important, but there is not just one process for all. An enterprise has many processes, at several levels. Understanding how these processes need to work together is a critical awareness, one that is too often ignored. When you understand real process needs, you understand that the specific process you follow is not as important as whether it plays well with the others."
From a paper by Gary Pollice in IBM's developerWorks site.

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FP's Recommended Reading
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Strategic Thinking and Improvement

Enterprise PM - It Starts with Strategic Interdependence

Face Reality

How to Think With Your Gut

Hugger-Mugger and Helter-Skelter

Managing for Murphy, Satan, and Yourself

More of the Same (Local/Global)

PMI Congress Notes: Using Risk Management for Strategic Advantage

Tell Me How You'll Measure Me and Ah, But What to Measure?

What's in Your Strategy?

Why Can't We All Just Get Along?

Why TOC Works
Project and Multi-Project Management
Critical Chain and (not or) XP

Defining Project Success (But for Whom?)

Down 'n Dirty w/TOC and PM (Part 1 of 5 consecutive posts)

End of Project Review

If Project Management is the Answer, What's the Question?

In Defense of Planning

It Ain't the Tools

Lessons Learned, Revisited

Predicting Uncertain Futures

Project Conflicts

Project Determinism (and other myths)

Project Portfolio Management

Promises, Predictions, and Planning

Removing Bottlenecks - A Core Systems Design Principle

Stage Gates and Critical Chain

Ten Top Sources of Project Failure (The Executive Version)

The Meaning of "Schedule"
Leadership and Change Management
Consistent Leadership Behavior

Invisible Dogma - Perpetuating Paradigms

Nothing But Value

On Assumption Busting

Personal Productivity - An Excuse?

The Psychology of Change Management

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