Friday, July 22, 2011

The Benefits of a Change Control Board

A CCB can be a small group of project team members who are willing to review and approve or reject change requests. Even if your projects are small, it's better to have some semblance of a CCB than to have none at all.

A CCB can help you manage the myriad changes that will come your way as a project kicks off. Your sponsors, stakeholders and project delivery team may all have agreed on scope, cost and schedule -- but it's inevitable that something will change before the project closes. 

Those changes come in many shapes and will impact your project positively and/or negatively. A CCB helps you figure out which changes are acceptable to undertake, which aren't and which can be shelved.

Instead of shunning change or accepting every idea without examination, use the CCB to determine the best course of action for the project. 

There will be times when members of your project delivery team have great ideas for the project, for example. After all, they're right in the mix during the execution phase and can clearly see where things could be improved. If you always shoot those ideas down, you will create strife between yourself and your team.

You may find no one comes to you with great ideas anymore. Part of a CCB's job is to listen to all ideas, carefully consider the merits, and explain to the project team (or stakeholder or sponsor) why an idea was approved, rejected or held until more favorable conditions arise to implement it. 

A CCB can be more than just a repository for tracking changes and a governance tool. A CCB can show team members and stakeholders that their ideas are worthwhile and innovative, and can help foster those ideas that most positively impact a project.

Article by Taralyn R. Frasqueri-Molina for Voices on Project Management.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Facebook boosts Google+ expansion

Facebook is fast becoming fertile ground for Google+ expansion. Facebook's success as a ginormous social network and open policies for information flow is perhaps an unexpected surprise that is aiding the growth of Google+ membership tremendously.

I sent a tweet a day ago for anyone to share a Google+ invite with me. I did not receive a response. With some limited research I found StuckInCustoms, that outlined a few easy steps to obtain a Google+ invite. Within a few seconds of providing my gmail address in one of the invite threads on the Stuck In Customs facebook fanpage, my Google+ account was set up. What was amazing was that requests for Google+ invites literally became viral. Well the idea is to pay it forward and help others to gain access to the Google+ network.

The apparent shutdown of the Google+ server has not been an obstacle at all as more people are added to Google+ every second. It has all to do with the opportunities that Facebook offer.

I doubt that Google+ will become a threat to Facebook in the near future. A big part of the hype right now is the human syndrome of "want to be part off". In my opinion, Facebook will remain the preferred social platform and Google+ will play catch-up, or that remains to be seen. 

Although interest Google+ has necessitated the apparent shutdown of their server, it has certainly garnered enough reason and opportunity for them to aggressively employ programmers to make Google+ more competitive.