Monday, April 20, 2009

SDLC humor

Over the years I have worked on or with many software development projects. Some have been smooth and some seem like they never wanted to end. Recently I Googled SDLC (software development life cycle) and one of the top links was a funny video on YouTube:

After this I found Timothy Trimble's Blog post on the SDLC process where he lays out what he thinks are some of the inital client questions to ask:

* Is this a new application need or a migration from an old application?
* What are the target platforms? (Mac, Win, Web, etc.)
* Will it be single or multi-user?
* Does it require a server based application/database?
* Is it to be a local or enterprise wide application? (Local site or multiple sites.)
* How soon does the client need the application delivered?
* Do you realistically have the resources for providing the application in the desired time frame?
* Does the application need to interface with other systems? (AS/400, Unix, etc.)
* Is there legacy data that has to be migrated to the new application, and what format is it in?
* Is the client interested in being involved with the testing of the application?
* Is training needed?
* Is documentation needed?
* Does the client require on-site development?

As with all projects, gathering the requirements is the most important thing, because we use this information to help set the timeline, budget and scope. Add more requirements later on and it may effect the timeline, budget and scope of the project.

Quote from
Edward V. Berard:
"Walking on water and developing software from a specification are easy if both are frozen."

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Personal Branding…

Personal branding seems like it is the latest web phenomenon. As communication changes more are moving to personal branding because they realize that when applying for jobs, web content will give them the step up than just a simple cover letter and resume and it also can work as a networking tool.

My personal branding story started back in 1996 when I was in college looking for a summer internship. At that time I built a 1 page website on geocities (hey! it was free) with a head-shot, 4 paragraphs about me, a link to my resume, a link to my email address and a link to some photos. At the time I always included my web address on the top of my resume. I registered the site on Yahoo! and monitored the search on my name to make sure my site was always towards the top of the first page.

Now about a year ago, I went to the next step. I created a normal multiple page website, purchased; started a blog on Project Management; joined Linkedin (I think I joined that about 5 yrs ago) and have come up with some creative ways to try to drive traffic to my blog (like add a link to it in my signature line on message forums).

Since I have created this I was found (by way of The Google) by a group setting up a talk on PMOs (Project Management Offices) and they asked me to come give a presentation on setting up a PMO that makes sense for your organization.

My next step was to add some press articles that I have been featured in. My first one came out this past month (I was selected for Madison's WI top 40 under the age of 40 for 2009 by InBusiness magazine).

The days of the paper resume are numbered....

Tips on How to create your own personal brand:

1. Create a Linkedin account (and join other social networking sites; twitter, facebook…); and then build your network of “friends”.
2. Create a webpage about yourself
3. Create a blog. This is the most important one. If you keep your blog to 1 topic you will show the world that you are passionate about what you do! Also, by adding more info to it you will increase your chance to be seen. Companies like are jumping on the company blogging idea too. has 1 full time person dedicated to the social media aspect of their website.
4. Read and comment on other blogs and message forums and have a signature line to promote yourself.
5. Set up an alert on your name (assuming your name is not a common one) so you know when something about you has been added to the web:
6. Use your status updates in facebook, twitter, linkedin to let your followers know you have a new blog post (shorten the link with:, or that you are keeping your eyes open for new opportunities (... is looking for new opportunities at a PMO in Madison).

Notable Quote:

Dan Schwabel

“Life is one big pitch, so you better start practicing.”


Great new book on Personal Branding: