kick-off meeting | LiquidPlanner

Ask A PM: How Do I Run an Effective Kick-Off Meeting?

“Dear Elizabeth: I ran a kick-off meeting for my project, and it was a disaster. I tried to do the detailed planning, but the group wouldn’t focus, and no one seemed to share the same view about what the project was going to deliver. The experience has put me off running kick-off meetings in the

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Estimates vs. Targets

On Monday I attended an Executive Breakfast put on by Construx Software. Steve McConnell, renowned author of books like Code Complete and also one of our advisors, discussed the “10 Deadly Sins of Software Estimation.” Not surprisingly, most of the audience chuckled knowingly after each “sin” was read aloud. And even as one of the few non-developers at LiquidPlanner, I...

Depending on Dependencies

We’ve launched dependencies! Last night the team stayed up late making sure that the update to the site went smoothly. This morning our users were greeted with dependencies. This is a big deal for us as we were getting quite a few requests for dependencies. In fact, several people asked us why we launched without...

Dogfood and Dependencies

Dogfood and Dependencies

I first heard the phrase “eat your own dog food” while doing some vendor work for Microsoft. Although I’m not sure why — none of the development teams I worked with used Visual SourceSafe, perhaps because it was an acquisition product. I also never saw a PM pull up a Microsoft Project plan on their...

Perfecting the Recipe

Perfecting the Recipe

“Round here, we eat our own dogfood.” “You, uh… what?” Interviewing for my job with LiquidPlanner late last summer, I was feeling a little over my head. I’m relatively new to the software industry and was meeting with really smart people who have years and years of software experience. And now they were talking about...

Have a plan, but don’t be a slave to it

People who know me know that I like to have a plan, but I’m the first one to stray from it. This may seem like a strange contradiction or worse hypocrisy, but here’s my justification: if everything goes according to plan, the best outcome is limited to your initial imagination. I’m not willing to settle...

Who knew estimation could feel so good?

I want to talk about estimation, but first I want to talk about beer and wine. Specifically, the act of opening beer and wine bottles. For about 2.5 years, we kept our bottle opener in our junk drawer, all the way across the kitchen from the refrigerator and pantry. And for 2.5 years, every time...

How hard can it be?

If you build software for a living, you surely have eaten these words at least once. My last major utterance was about two years ago when I said to Jason and Bruce, “How hard can it be to build a project management tool that doesn’t suck?”. I said it about the time we had just...


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