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Author: Randy Cox

Getting Rid of the Bull to Discover Project First Principles

In 1945, Pablo Picasso prepared a sequence of 11 fascinating lithographs depicting a detailed, lifelike bull transforming into an elegant abstraction.  You’ve probably seen these images, and perhaps read an article or two on how art and design teachers like to use these as an excellent object lesson when they teach the principle of stripping your subject matter down to its essence, peeling back the onion, and discovering the object’s first principles before starting to piece together what innovation or variation you may want to introduce.    Although trained as a physicist and then pivoting into a world-class consultant, author,...

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Don’t Do This, and You Are Staring Burnout in the Face

I think it’s fair to say that the Agile literature encourages us to have a lighter touch with regards to how many processes and structures we set up relative to what we’d put in place in our pre-Agile work lives.  I’m open to discussion on this, to a point, but anyone hoping to engage me in an academic, theoretical, borderline-religious discussion on what “pure” this or that methodology “really” said is in for a disappointment.  I don’t really go there anymore.  I used to be willing to jump into the octagon and throw down at a moment’s notice, but...

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The First Four Things I Check When a Project is in Trouble

Let’s you and I agree right up front to dispense with the fluffy opening three or four introductory paragraphs (that we all skim over anyway) and just get right to it, shall we? You have a project going sideways.  It’s yours.  You own it.  It’s your baby.  You lined up a talented team, appointed a project manager, signed the charter, gave the project your full support at the kickoff, received weekly status updates, and now the you-know-what is about to hit the fan and that is no-freakin-bueño for your organization, and especially not for your career.  You’re sweating.  If...

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