You'd think that we'd be smarter about IT projects by now.
You think that we'd be tired of the horrifying rates of failure, and the
crushing consequences of those failures.
But if you are not spending more time understanding your customers - and
developing tightly scoped requirements to make great software to meet their
real needs, not some imagined "needs mash-up" cobbled together by the
squeakiest wheels in your organization - you're part of the problem, and
you're accepting failure as an ever-present option.
It's time to stop the madness.
It's time to reduce the waste of multi-million dollar projects that get
scrapped1, it's time to reduce public IT scandals (see a recent lawsuit
claiming racketeering by SAP and Deloitte)2, it's time to step away from
billions in cost overruns inpart from "inadequate requirements management."3
Most IT executives are familiar with ... (more)
IT exists to support the business - and in best-of-class IT departments, this
truism is embedded deeply into the departmental culture.
Yet in so many cases, this self-evident truth gets lost in the mayhem of
building, maintaining and supporting the myriad of complicated and brittle
legacy application systems that have been put together over the years to
support the enterprise's business.
Legacy Application Modernization is a transformative initiative that has the
potential to not only change the way IT supports the business, but to change
the very nature and culture of IT.
IT Cu... (more)
Consider the following scenario-typical in many application development
organizations. A major new release of an application has just gone into
production. Although the development and QA teams endured many late nights of
coding and testing, and consumed large quantities of delivered pizza, the
project missed its ship date. Still, customers are happy with the product and
are giving positive feedback. By many definitions, the team has produced a
Then, a new, large business opportunity requires the rapid implementation of
a significant new feature in the product. ... (more)
I’ve kept this tattered Dilbert cartoon strip on my office wall since
1996. It’d be a lot funnier if it weren’t so true. Every marketer
strives to be sales-driven. However, that doesn’t mean that you
should embrace a product management discipline that includes changing the
product every time a new sales opportunity surfaces
In my past experiences, 90% of those “if you just change your product,
we’ll buy it” sales opportunities end up imploding by the time the
changes in the product are complete, anyways.
Worst Product Management Practice #1: constantly shifting product priori... (more)
I’ve been using Steve Jobs and Apple as examples in my software blog
dedicated to the creation of Great Software. Although Steve Jobs is thought
of as being the Mac/iPhone/iPad/iPod guy, he’s also a software hero. At
least he’s one of my software heroes.
Steve Jobs’ Apple doesn’t just build products. They understand the market
and the consumers better than anyone else. And then they create something
that defines and totally owns that market. Their deep understanding of the
needs, wants and priorities of the consumer and their “make no
compromises” approach allows them to do this... (more)