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First, break all the requirements

What? In 1999, Buckingham and Coffman authored First, Break All the Rules. They used Gallop data from manager interviews to identify how good managers drive employee satisfaction. Internally at Seilevel, we use the methodology described in the book for gauging employee satisfaction. People who join us are sometimes surprised by our …

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Don’t Throw Away Your Shot: Be A Hamilton Product Manager

Five years ago, nobody really remembered Alexander Hamilton, but with the helping hand of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Tony-winning musical he has burst back into the spotlight over two hundred years later. While I will agree that Miranda’s songs are incredible, there is not enough focus on Hamilton’s greatest achievement: he got the US …

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Homer Simpson, Difficult Stakeholder

I am a firm believer that any situation in life or in business can be traced to an episode of either The Simpsons or Seinfeld. In The Simpsons season 2 episode “Oh Brother, Where Art Thou,” the patriarch of the Simpson family designs a car, which provides a surprisingly sophisticated …

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Making Your SME Smile

The first elicitation session on a new project, in unchartered territory with a new Subject Matter Expert (SME), can be challenging. You must ask questions and facilitate conversation to chip away at the business problem.  Seven weeks ago, I began a series of “elicitation sessions” in a brand new topic- …

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Shakespeare Would Suck at Gathering Requirements

In William Shakespeare’s famous play, Romeo and Juliet, Juliet tells her sweet Romeo: “What’s in a name? that which we call a rose By any other name would smell as sweet” Short answer in the requirements world: No. If you have ever been tasked with writing software requirements, you may be …

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