Posted by Ian Brookes
20/02/17 07:41

School reunions are funny things, you quickly rewind back to when you were 18 and awkward and gangly and clumsy, not that I’ve changed that much since then anyway. However, my recent reunion was really quite poignant, former teachers who had such an influencing and formative impact on me are now of an age that each year fewer of them remain alive or are well enough to attend.

Posted by James Brookes
17/02/17 08:30

A big hello from Cake and our Project Management Team. Another week in the agile world and the twenty first edition of “This Week in #Agile”. Our PM team continues to scour the web and read through your blogs and articles. Here are handful of articles that we found to be most interesting this week which we would like to share with you today, along with our brief thoughts on them.

Posted by Vicky Walker
15/02/17 13:06

It is not long now until myself and my colleague Izzy will be jet setting across the pond to the Big Apple! Why you ask? For one reason and one reason alone. To discover and hire some talented Software and DevOps Consultants to join our ever expanding company, Cake Solutions. Almost feel like the modern day Columbus (or Vikings dependent on which version of history you subscribe to as to who “discovered” America).

Posted by Ian Brookes
15/02/17 08:30

The first time I visited New York, I was warned about three things: to be constantly aware of personal safety, to forget about tea as they only serve coffee, and, in the interests of political correctness (and, potentially, personal safety), never offer criticism of the President.

Posted by Ian Walker
14/02/17 15:37

                 

If you are a CIO but didn’t take part in the Gartner CIO Agenda report research you can access the report here.

Posted by Marc Nevins
10/02/17 13:59

Hello again from Cake and our Project Management Team. Another week in the agile world sees the twentieth edition of “This Week in #Agile”, with this week’s findings looking at Stakeholder Management, Client Management and Communication.

Posted by James Furness
10/02/17 11:38

So, i’ve not done a blog a quite a while, my last one fell out of my head and onto the interwebs almost 12 months ago. Since then i’ve worked on quite a few different posts, but a combination of writer’s block and general life ‘things’ haven’t afforded me the time to finish anything. Except, of course, this. This is a look at Cake’s development process.

Posted by Marc Nevins
03/02/17 11:59

 

Hello again from Cake and our Project Management Team. Another week in the agile world sees the nineteenth edition of “This Week in #Agile”, with this week’s findings targeting culture, team working and possible ways to help with project improvement!

Yassal Sundman’s article on "How to set role expectations and working agreements" details how to run a short and effective workshop that can address conflict in teams regarding expectations, unspoken policies and disagreements. Yassal states that conflicts in teams about how to work are common, and she recognises that you can’t avoid all conflicts, but, according to her,  you can help teams by explicitly defining the roles and working agreements.  Yassal’s  workshop seems very easy to implement and may be very useful to teams that are experiencing conflict at present.    

After reading Christopher Moss’s article regarding "Helping distributed teams work", I realised how fortunate I am to work with my current team who are geographically dispersed over 4 different time-zones and thousands of miles, with us remaining a very effective team!  Christopher highlights some very pertinent points, in particular the use of tools whilst retaining an agile culture, the importance of good communication and why sprint retrospectives are invaluable.   

"Skills and qualities needed for remote work" is another useful course posted on LinkedIn Learning (If you don’t have membership rights already, you can start a free 30 day trial and see if the latter’s worth subscribing to afterwards). Whilst this course details the desirable attributes that hiring managers are seeking from candidates who are seeking remote working posts; I think it is also a very useful checklist for people who are currently occupying such positions.  I work from home regularly, and certainly find many of the points raised in this course very pertinent.

Susan Madsen’s article regarding "7 Ways to Improve Project Tracking" includes a handy check-list of questions that you may find are a useful addition to sprint retros and general planning.  Sometimes it’s easy to be totally immersed in the immediate concerns of the project, whilst neglecting the big picture and not taking a helicopter view, as Susan describes.

Bob McGannon’s course regarding "Rescuing Troubled Projects" may provide a lifeline to PM’s who are currently experiencing project troubles? With time being a constant adversary of most PM’s, this short and very well outlined course might be worth viewing in a locked office, amidst the chaos, and may provide some worthy enlightenment. Hopefully Bob’s course helps!

Hopefully you’ve found these articles useful, particularly in regards to the subjects of culture, teamwork and communication. As shall continue to be the case with this weekly blog on all things agile and Project Management, if you write a blog or read an article that you would like to be included, feel free to contact me either via email - marcn@cakesolutions.net -  or twitter - @Nevins_Marc - and we can try and include it in a future edition!

This week’s image is the one utilised by Christopher Moss and illustrates, in a clever and simplified manner, the pitfalls of remote working and poor communication.  That’s my take on it, what do you think?

 

 

 

Posted by Ian Brookes
30/01/17 06:11

Where’s your favourite place to do your best thinking? Mine’s a deserted, windswept, isolated beach. It’s hard for me to put into words why I like the beach so much, it’s just everything about it is renewing for me, almost like therapy. Beach Therapy. Perfect beaches, perfect water, perfect rock pools, your own space, all the seclusion you could want.

Posted by Marc Nevins
27/01/17 09:00

A big hello from Cake and our Project Management Team. Another week in the agile world sees the eighteenth edition of “This Week in #Agile”. Our PM team continues to scour the web and read through your blogs and articles. Here are a handful that we found to be most interesting and which we would like to share with you today, along with our brief thoughts on them.