Skip to content

Software Development Blogs: Programming, Software Testing, Agile Project Management

Methods & Tools

Subscribe to Methods & Tools
if you are not afraid to read more than one page to be a smarter software developer, software tester or project manager!

NOOP.NL - Jurgen Appelo
Syndicate content
The Creative Networker
Updated: 1 hour 17 min ago

Hey, Join My New Project!

Tue, 02/14/2017 - 20:24

I am going to challenge you.

I want to see you do things you’ve never done before. I want you to learn, experiment, fail beautifully, and then try again. And I want to see you make progress in areas that few people in the world have explored.

I am talking about my new project.
You are welcome to join.

Why are you checking your Facebook or Twitter streams multiple times per day? Is it because you were sent to a social media workshop by your manager? Or because these companies are smartly targeting your intrinsic motivators?

What has caused millions of people to start running, exercising, and monitoring their calorie intakes? Was there a government campaign promoting healthier lifestyles? Or is it because thousands of apps, smartphones and wearables have made it a lot more fun?

What convinced me to switch from taxis to ridesharing, from radio stations to streaming music, and from workstations to tablets and notebooks? Is it because it’s part of someone else’s change program? Or because I wanted a more convenient work-life?

I’m sure you get my point.

People don’t change because they’re told to change. People change because smart companies make them want to change. It usually involves techniques borrowed from gamification, behavioral economics, and habitualization.

Consider a fitness tracker, for example. I run three times per week because the metrics of the fitness tracker on my smartphone have gamified the exercises so that I’m competing against myself. By showing me statistics, and comparing those with others, the tracker uses “nudges” borrowed from behavioral economics to influence my behaviors further. And by reinforcing the good behaviors with various triggers and rewards, the app has turned my regular exercises into habits.

Games, nudges, and habits.
That’s how people change.

We now live in a time where manuals, workshops, promotion campaigns, and change programs are not sufficient anymore to achieve organizational change. To really understand and influence people, we can now use smartphones, wearables, big data, artificial intelligence, and a healthy dose of applied psychology and sociology.

Do you find that fascinating?
Let’s try and improve organizations in a more modern way.

JOIN ME

The post Hey, Join My New Project! appeared first on NOOP.NL.

Categories: Project Management

I’ve Had Enough

Mon, 02/13/2017 - 18:50

I can’t take it anymore.

I’ve had enough of people asking me how they can improve their team, while none of the team members are willing to run any experiments and learn from their failures.

I’ve had enough of organizations that want to scale with agile, while the change programs that managers roll out are still mainly about cutting costs and optimizing profits.

I’ve had enough of politicians promising change and making things better, while the policies of their parties are all about scaremongering and protectionism.

I firmly believe that most people are good. They usually mean well. But more often than not, group performance is abysmal. Progress stalls because teams, organizations, and political parties lack a systemic approach to purposeful evolution. I fear that, in most cases, the whole is less than the sum of the parts. In other words, great people, terrible systems.

Can we help improve those groups?

I’m sure we can. But history proves that writing books, running workshops, and organizing conferences are not enough to achieve sustainable improvement. And despite their heroic efforts, coaches and consultants often see their hard-earned results evaporate after yet another idiotic organizational system failure.

I am convinced that the solution is staring us straight in the eyes. The very reason that teams, organizations, and political systems perform badly is that the world is changing faster and faster. Have you ever seen the adoption rates of smartphones, social networks, or streaming media? Did you see how fast people are learning to use wearables and robots?

Anyone who claims that “people resist change” is just flaunting his or her incompetence.

They key to improving collaboration and performance across teams, organizations and other groups is understanding how some human behaviors are adopted at a rate that is similar to a global epidemic. If you have a good idea, and people aren’t picking it up, it doesn’t mean that they resist the change. It also doesn’t mean that your idea is wrong. It just means that there is no platform enabling the idea to go viral.

I’ve had enough of good people wasting their time in bad teams and organizations. I’ve had enough of fantastic books, workshops, conferences, coaches, and consultants achieving only temporary performance fixes. We need a platform that allows good ideas to spread across teams and organizations at Internet-speed. And like the adoption rates of new technologies, we need that platform to make any behavioral changes sustainable.

I want the whole to be more than the sum of the parts. There should be a platform that helps people grow awesome systems.

Do you want to build that platform with me?

JOIN ME

The post I’ve Had Enough appeared first on NOOP.NL.

Categories: Project Management

Available Soon: Co-ownership of Management 3.0

Fri, 01/13/2017 - 14:20

Exactly one year ago, Management 3.0 was named as the front-runner of “The Third Wave of Agile“.

In 2015, the Management 3.0 workshop licensing business grew by 43%.
In 2016, our team was able to grow the annual revenue by another 45%.

What will happen in 2017?

I’m not sure. But whatever it is, you can own and enjoy the results!

Some people have accused me of being a dictator. Indeed, in the last five years, I have always been the single owner of the Management 3.0 business. But I tried to be a benevolent dictator.

Categories: Project Management

Facebook privacy! I am SHOCKED.

Sun, 12/25/2016 - 02:36

I am SHOCKED.

I have been following the conversations around Facebook’s (lack of) privacy rules and people inform me that Facebook is collecting data about everything that I do and they SELL this data to advertisers!! This means that it is NO COINCIDENCE that Facebook shows me advertisements for products that I bought yesterday, cheap flight tickets to cities that I just returned from, and magazines that I am already subscribed to. OMG, can you believe that??

And they are doing their best to MINE EVEN MORE DATA about me with the sole purpose of showing me ads that even better match my needs and desires!! Seriously, at some point, those ads might actually become useful. That means that, instead of clicking on a Facebook ad, on average, once per year, they might entice me to click on them TWICE per year. The HORROR!

They do all this just so that I can use their service for free, for several hours per week. I get value without paying anything, and Facebook keeps analyzing all my behaviors so that they can optimize it until I like their system so much that I don’t want to leave.

It’s insane. No company should be allowed to operate like this.

Why are governments not doing anything?!!

I am so disappointed in Mark Zuckerberg. I honestly thought that he was the world’s most generous philanthropist, paying for this platform for all of us, with his 40 billion dollars. I figured it was simply a mind-blowing coincidence that for two weeks straight, I saw Facebook ads for mattresses, which started one day after I bought two mattresses. I genuinely thought that Facebook was more like a charity organization. I was asking around how I could donate money!

I feel TRICKED.

Governments should put an end to this! I insist that Facebook snoops on me WITHOUT offering me anything of value.

Like governments do.

(c) 2013 Sarah Marshall, Creative Commons 2.0

The post Facebook privacy! I am SHOCKED. appeared first on NOOP.NL.

Categories: Project Management

The Ultimate Top 200 Best Novels, Ever

Mon, 12/19/2016 - 18:56


I love novels.
And I love lists.

What better way for me to spend some cold and rainy days near the end of the year 2016 making a list of the best novels ever written? I truly desired to know which novels I should read before I die, according to the opinions of experts and book lovers. So I started a project that took me (and my assistant) several weeks to complete. You can now download the results.

In other words, here is my Christmas gift for you:

THE ULTIMATE TOP 200 BEST NOVELS, EVER
(226 Books to Read Before You Die)

For your convenience, I have linked each title to its Amazon page. Each author is linked to the author’s Wikipedia page, and the publication year is linked to the book’s page on GoodReads.

I hope you enjoy reviewing this list as much as I enjoyed making it. If you find any errors or mistakes, or if you know a way to improve this list, please feel free to let me know.

The post The Ultimate Top 200 Best Novels, Ever appeared first on NOOP.NL.

Categories: Project Management

My Core Values

Fri, 11/11/2016 - 14:00

I’m writing this the day after Donald Trump won the election to become the 45th President of the United States. It is a day many of us are sure to remember.

Others have written enough about Trump’s behaviors, ethics, and his style of communication. There is nothing for me to add. Maybe the best way of dealing with the current situation (and the next four years) is to reflect on our own personal values. Criticizing others is easy. But what about being more critical of ourselves?

So… I had a good look at myself, the things that motivate me, and the aspects of my work ethic that I value above everything else. After extensive deliberation, I came up with five core values. I call them my IICCC (double I, triple C):

Independence: I do everything to stay free and autonomous
Integrity: I treat everyone fairly and equally, without discrimination
Curiosity: Exploring and understanding the world has my highest priority
Creativity: Making new things and being innovative is equally important
Competence: When I do work I enjoy, I aim to become very good at it

That’s it! Those are my new core values.

Of course, defining your values is the easy part. The hard part is living them. That will require regular reflection and maybe some rewards for my good behaviors. Some chocolate cookies perhaps.

Let’s hope that Donald Trump is doing a similar exercise.

(This post is part of my soon-to-be-announced Agility Scales project.)

(c)2015 Nichole Burrows, Creative Commons 2.0

The post My Core Values appeared first on NOOP.NL.

Categories: Project Management

My Purpose

Tue, 11/08/2016 - 11:15

As part of my (soon-to-be-announced) Agility Scales project, I decided to practice what I preach, lead by example, and eat my own dog food. I am happy to share my personal purpose in this blog post.

Every team, organization and individual benefits from crafting a purpose (also called a mission) and focusing on meaningful work. A purpose (or mission) is about why you do your work.

As Simon Sinek says, start with why.

I firmly believe that your purpose should match your actual behaviors. If your intent is to do one thing, but your actions show you’re doing something else, then your purpose has a problem. That’s why I had a critical look at my work habits over the last few years to see if there is a clear “why”.

Patterns were hard to identify because I’ve done many things that seem totally unrelated. I cannot say that my purpose is writing, or speaking, or changing the world of management, because I happily also did other things that did not fit those categories, and I did not consider that a waste of my time.

However, I only do work that I enjoy; I always try to turn that work into revenue streams, and I only want to do things that matter to other people. I canceled many experiments because I lost interest, lost money, or lost people’s support.

This insight reminded me of a slogan that I once came up with:

Make fun, make money, and make a difference.

I have decided to turn this slogan into my personal mission statement. It describes what I’ve done for the last seven years; it’s what I want to do for many years to come; and it guides my decision-making process, at least for now.

Some critics from the English language police may object and say that “making fun” should actually be “having fun”. I know that. But I like having a bit of fun with the English language, and many people know me for making fun of both myself and others. I don’t take everything too seriously. So there.

Other critics may point out that the statement is too general. Almost any kind of work could match this purpose. In fact, it looks suspiciously similar to the Ikigai model, which says that your purpose is the cross-section of what you love, what you’re good at, what the world needs, and what people are willing to pay for.

I agree.

But maybe that is exactly the point of my mission statement. It’s not the purpose of a team or company; it’s the purpose of me. I want the freedom to do anything I want, and be able to change my focus to any new opportunity, including things I haven’t even imagined yet. But the self-imposed constraints remain: I should always enjoy the work, earn an income, and do something meaningful for others. Make fun, make money, and make a difference.

And that’s a fine purpose to have, I think.

 

Photo: (c) 2009  Seth Sawyers, Creative Commons 2.0

The post My Purpose appeared first on NOOP.NL.

Categories: Project Management