Four major trends are happening now that will change the world of technology as we know it: Cloud computing, Social, Mobile and the Millennial generation. We are looking for two thought leaders who want to help transform the world at the convergence of two of these trends: cloud computing and mobile devices. Mobile devices, particularly tablets, will transform the use of clipboards and paper forms. 95% of companies today still use clipboards and we have a unique opportunity to help them make that massive transformation to tablets. If you’re somewhat technical and love introducing people to life-changing ideas, get in touch with me.
The second opportunity is a little less “worked out” and we need not only a biz dev entrepreneur but also someone who wants to work in developing the customer profile. Both opportunities require taking equity in exchange for sweat. We want people who can eventually take over as CEO of both these companies. Must be based in the Seattle area!
I recently finished reading the hit book “The Lean Startup” by Eric Ries. This book describes how “today’s entrepreneurs use continuous innovation to create radically successful businesses.” Much of the concept for The Lean Startup movement is centered around Agile thinking and the Toyota Way. Having started four of my own companies, including one complete failure, this movement is a great step in the right direction.
Agile thinking is becoming pervasive among the project management profession; one such example is the newly released PMP-ACP (Project Management Professional – Agile Certified Professional) certification from the Project Management Institute. The growth of Agile in our project management practice at Bellevue Tech is gaining momentum as evidenced by the number of Scrum Master/Project Managers we have in our client engagements. However, the focus of the PMP certification around agile and our consulting services are mostly targeted at software development projects. These Agile concepts can be applied well beyond software.
Eric Ries defines a Startup as “an organization dedicated to creating something new under conditions of extreme uncertainty.” Wow, doesn’t this sound like a project team and what we as project managers are managing everyday? Nearly every project is chartered to building some new capability under conditions of extreme uncertainty. Yet, how much are we applying experimentation through a process of building, measuring and learning in our projects? The Lean Startup thoroughly discusses these concepts of first testing the major assumptions of our plan: are we building something valuable? And it follows that every idea, every feature, every organizational capability can also be tested as to its value and viability. So often we are told by our client and/or sponsor that what we’re building is valuable. This is a leap of faith! We must begin to rigorously invest the tiny amount of time up-front testing these hypotheses.
So many of our projects are set up for launch dates (and initial testing date, I might add) way into the future. Like my startup Kickplay, which launched in late 2007, our team found out very quickly (and disappointingly) that what we thought was valuable with growth potential was marginally valuable and likely not scalable. Though we followed an Agile development methodology, we failed to test some of our leap of faith assumptions early in the process using tiny experiments.
Following startup principles from The Lean Startup can help make your project a winner. If you are using Agile on your projects, and even if you’re not, pick up a copy of The Lean Startup and start focusing more on value creation than on meeting deadlines and scope. Your customers and sponsors will be glad you did.
Are you more or less likely to work with a company who has a stated charitable giving program on top-line revenue?
Replay from CNBC – A must see for ANY executive, not just in technology!
Technology has morphed beyond chips and bytes into a tool powerful enough to fundamentally redesign the human species, creating a new DNA for how we live, work and socialize. CNBC’s Simon Hobbs gathers renowned experts to tackle the challenges facing technology today.
Today’s business environment demands a new way to think and even more important, a new way to act. Improved performance happens in a moment we like to call “NOW”. And while most complex organizations today have some kind of process definition for various parts of their organization, without measurement, really, what is the point? We believe that driving value in an organization first requires measuring processes, sub-processes and outcomes. A secondary value of defining the tolerances for these balanced “scorecards” is the teamwork, understanding and disciplined focus it provides for the team and individuals involved.
I recently attended a half-day process/outcome scorecard development session for the leaders of a human resources process group. Without boring you in the details, the most significant part of the day for me was a closing statement made by their Sr. Vice President of Human Resources who said, “Can you just imagine where we were five weeks ago, doesn’t this feel amazing?” And one of the lead managers replied, “I am looking forward to this becoming ingrained as part of our daily routine.”
People who are implementing The Mother of All Processes are passionate about the simplicity and in feeling the improved teamwork even during the planning and development process for NOW. Are you ready to Manage in the NOW?