Fresh Links Sundae – March 9, 2014 Edition Links Sundae encapsulates information I have come across during the past week. Often they are from the people whose work I admire or resonate with me. I hope you will find these ideas thought-provoking at the minimum. Even better, I hope these ideas will, over time, help my fellow IT pros make better decisions, be awesome, and kick ass!

Many think of operational checklists as the script or work instructions, but they actually are not. Rob England explains how checklist should be leveraged to increase the effectiveness of any IT organization. The one top tip for IT operations and support: Checklists (The IT Skeptic)

While IT continues to be recognized as the expert for applying technologies to support business processes, a trend is becoming clear that many non-IT groups or individuals are also becoming proficient at leveraging technologies to improve their own productivity. Jon Hall believes that the trend should be leveraged to better connect with its user end and to improve its own effectiveness. The myth of trust: why consumer feedback is making us rethink IT (ServiceDesk360)

IT is well positioned to make positive contributions to many aspects of the business operations. Michael Hugos suggests how a CIO can collaborate effective with the CFO in the organization through risk management. The CIO Relationship With the CFO Is Based on Managing Risk (Enterprise Efficiency) Michael Hugos

Many organizations are evaluating how the DevOps practice can be integrated its own IT departments. Gene Kim describes the concepts behind the DevOps thinking and how the DevOps and ITSM practices are decidedly complementary to each other. Trust me: The DevOps Movement fits perfectly with ITSM (The ITSM Review)

Most business leaders still perceive IT as an operational, tactical role. Pearl Zhu suggests approaches that IT leaders can leverage to turn around the reputation and to transform into a strategic partner. CIO as Respected Business Leader (Future of CIO)

Many organizations spend training dollars to build individual knowledge and performance. Julie Montgomery and Gordon Brown recommend ways to spending training resources not just add individual knowledge but also to improve organizational capability. Quit Spending Money on ITIL Training (Plexent Blog)

After attending the recent annual MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference, Michael Schrage shares his thinking and observations on why leaders need to pay attention to how we identify and blend individual talents to perform measurably greater than simply the sum of their individual results. Team Chemistry Is the New Holy Grail of Performance Analytics (Harvard Business Review)

Many organizations use internal audits to assess potential deficiencies and improvement areas. Laszlo Gonc outlines six ways for internal audits to improve organizational effectiveness and to deliver value. 6 Success Factors for Better Internal Audits (Intreis)

Many of us have dreams of becoming someone who is much more of whom we are today. While all opportunities involves risks, Marshall Goldsmith recommends that making a decision to do something will be a much better option than simply wasting time debating contemplating about a future that will never come. Who Are You Arguing With? (Marshall Goldsmith Personal Blog)

Based on the findings of their own and other reputable researchers, Bob Sutton talks about what is considered the appropriate team size for most tasks and explains the dynamics of a team. Why Big Teams Suck: Seven (Plus or Minus Two) Is the Magical Number Once Again (Work Matters)

Fresh Links Sundae – December 1, 2013 Edition Links Sundae encapsulates information I have come across during the past week. Often they are from the people whose work I admire or resonate with me. I hope you will find these ideas thought-provoking at the minimum. Even better, I hope these ideas will, over time, help my fellow IT pros make better decisions, be awesome, and kick ass!

Most would agree that it takes six months or more for knowledge workers to become sufficiently productive to produce value. In order to enable the productivity of the new workers, many organizations need to utilize efficient knowledge transfer approaches. Greg Sanker believes that a standardized service delivery approach modeled by IT Service Management frameworks like ITIL and COBIT can help. The Coming Workforce: A Case for IT Service Management (The ITSM Review)

Although the term “Shadow IT” has only appeared in the press and media in recent years, the practice has been around for a much longer period of time. David Cappuccio explains how the latest iteration of Shadow IT has grown in significance and scope to where the C-suite should start to pay attention. Shine Some Light on Shadow IT (Gartner Blogs)

Lather, Rinse and Repeat (LRR) is a well-known process with a strong tie to the shampoo products since 1990’s. To Earl Begley, LRR is a reminder to design processes that can be easily executed and deliver desired results. With that in mind, He suggests several tips that ITSM can learn from the shampoo process. Lather, rinse and repeat your process (The ITSM Review)

Many organizations conduct self-audits on software to ensure a sound assets management practice or to get prepared for third-party audits. David Foxen explains the importance of the self-audit and how to perform one in your organization. The importance of Internal Software Audits (The ITAM Review)

Even today, Michael Schrage believes that most organizations struggle to answer even the simplest 80/20 analytics questions. He also suggests that the Big Data tools and techniques will help shape the 80/20 analytics when the organization can leverage both approaches at the same time. How is Big Data Transforming Your 80/20 Analytics? (Harvard Business Review)

For many organizations or industries, conducting effective data analysis is becoming an essential activity for many managers. Thomas Redman recommends an exercise that can help managers to become more data literate and more adept at data analysis. How to Start Thinking Like a Data Scientist (Harvard Business Review)

Many BAs use diagrams to express ideas or to create simple and effective visual models, but they don’t always know what tools are available for their work. Laura Brandenburg outlines 5 diagramming tools that a BA can consider adding to his/her requirement gathering and analysis toolkit. 5 Effective Diagramming Tools You Can Afford (Bridging the Gap)

We all deal with stress and anxiety in a number of ways. Mitch Joel recommends five tools that you can deploy to manage the times when things get a little too stressed or anxious. Keep Calm And Carry On – 5 Steps To Getting Rid Of Stress And Anxiety (Six Pixels of Separation)

According to Marshall Goldsmith, part of being an effective leader is setting up systems to measure everything that matters. At the same time, he advocates that measuring the “soft” values is just as essential as tracking the hard numbers. Account for Soft-Side Values (Marshall Goldsmith Personal Blog)

The performance review process in many companies carries risks and downside. The reviews often don’t produce the intended results, either. Bob Sutton believes there are three things that an excellent performance review always should have. Three Hallmarks of Good Performance Evaluations (Work Matters)

Fresh Links Sundae – December 2, 2012 Edition

Fresh Links Sundae encapsulates information I have come across during the past week. They maybe ITSM related or not entirely. Often they are from the people whose work resonates with me, and I hope you will find something of value.

While many organizations may view ITSM as a simple exercise of implementing the processes in the ITIL books, Kirstie Magowan explains why “implementing” ITIL is missing the point and how not to lose the big picture. Repeat after me: “I am not IMPLEMENTING ITIL®” (The ITSM Review)

It is human nature to seek out the quick and simple solutions to business problem, and ITSM is no different. David Ratcliffe explains why IT Service Management is all about the challenge of leading and managing people. My 1, 2, 3 of ITSM: Or, What Is IT Service Management REALLY All About? (Pink Elephant)

Many organizations would like to get a much better handle on the tracking and utilization of their IT asset. Jon Hall talks about why he thinks IT Asset Management has an image problem and what we can do to address and improve the situation. Let’s work together to fix ITAM’s image problem (Evolving ITSM)

Partly spurred by Jon Hall’s insights on IT Asset Management, Stephen Mann talks about the current state of Software Asset Management effort in many organizations and presents a quick analysis. The Rise, Fall, And Rise Of Software Asset Management: It’s More Than Just A “Good Thing To Do” (Forrester Blogs)

We all had our fair share of working with ineffective managers or bosses. Bob Lewis gives two suggestions on what can leaders do to prevent or to minimize the negative effects of having ineffective managers in their organizations. An ounce of bad-boss prevention (IS Survivor Publishing)

Gamification has been a popular topic in the IT service management space lately. Martin Grobisen shares his opinion on why such reward and recognition mechanism may not be as effective as some would like to believe. Service Desk Gamification – Not the Priority (ITSM Lens)

Compelled by a recent debate on the need for service catalog, Rob England outlines his view of why service catalog is a critical foundation to any IT service provider organization. Service catalogue and service request catalogue (The IT Skeptic)

Responding to a recent LinkedIn discussion where someone advocates that incident priority should never be changed once determined, Gregory Tucker expresses his view on why the incident prioritization is much more dynamic. Changing Incident Priority and Incident Prioritization in Detail (

It is almost the end of 2012. Bob Sutton updates his reading list and shares them with his blog readers. 11 Books Every Leader Should Read: Updated for 2012 (Bob Sutton)

Being a parent can be a fulfilling life experience, but you don’t need to be a parent to appreciate what Rachel Martin has written for all of us to think about. 43 Life Lessons that Kids Teach Us. (finding joy)

Fresh Links Sundae – November 11, 2012 Edition

Fresh Links Sundae encapsulates information I have come across during the past week. They maybe ITSM related or not entirely. Often they are from the people whose work resonates with me, and I hope you will find something of value.

Referring to the recent research data from Forrester and Rackspace, Stephen Mann talks about how much poor IT service delivery can cost an organization and how to remedy the situation by focusing on the services, instead of the technologies. What’s The Real Cost Of Poor IT Support And Shoddy Customer Service? (Forrester Blogs)

While SMART goal certainly has its uses in business, Bob Lewis explains why SMART goals might not be such a smart thing to do in IT when they are used in a not so “smart” way. How management fads are killing IT (IT Management – InfoWorld)

Although personal digital technologies have transformed our technology experience dramatically, Rob England cautions that how we use/experience technologies at the personal level does not always translate directly to how businesses should plan/deploy technologies to achieve business outcomes. 2012 #3 Don’t confuse your personal digital experience with business (The IT Skeptic)

Leveraging from the Lean principles, Ben Newton explains why IT Operations should consider incorporate Lean into its activities and outlines several suggestions on doing that. Lean and DevOps – A revolution in IT Operations is on the way (BMC Communities Blog)

Having just returned from ITSM 12 (the 21st itSMF conference), James Finister shared what he saw and learned while attending and participant in the event. ITSM 12 (Core ITSM)

Before your organization launches the next round of social IT initiatives and tools, Melanie Karunaratne outlines the considerations that should be planned for and taken into account. Managing Social IT Channel: Look Before You Leap (LANDesk Blog)

Although winning is arguably the most important goal in sports, Marshall Goldsmith advocates that winning in the business environments takes more than keeping scores. It also involves understanding the organization’s goals and achieving the goals with the utmost enthusiasm and the highest level of performance. Is Winning Everything? (Marshall Goldsmith Personal Blog)

Using rhetorical questions in your speech effectively can enhance the speech’s impact.  Andrew Dlugan explores nine strategies of using such mechanism. How many ways can you use rhetorical questions in your speech? (Six Minutes)

Referring to John Gardner’s teaching on what university should stand for, Bob Sutton talks about the lessons that can be learned from, not just as a university professor but for everyone else. John Gardner on What a University Ought to Stand For (Bob Sutton)

While we find ourselves getting stuck over something from time to time, Seth Godin gives a simple tip to get pass the obstacle and get going again. The best way to get unstuck (Seth’s Blog)

Fresh Links Sundae – September 30, 2012 Edition

Fresh Links Sundae encapsulates information I have come across during the past week. They maybe ITSM related or not entirely. Often they are from the people whose work resonates with me, and I hope you will find something of value.

Estimating projects accurately and keeping project execution on track can present major challenges for many organizations. Bob Lewis makes several suggestions on how to effectively manage your project portfolio. The ins and outs of IT project portfolio management (Advice Line)

If you are working on putting together a Supplier Management process for your organization, Alicia Choo posted a sample operating procedure document and a few other support documents that may help in your endeavor. My take on ITSM and IT Governance: Supplier Management (Choofca’s Brain Dump)

The word “warranty” can carry different meanings for different organizations when working with the service providers. Benjamin Whitehead talks about the essential elements to consider when defining warranty with service providers. What can be considered ‘warranty’ for a managed IT service? (ITSM Portal)

Considering the critical role intellectual property (IP) plays in an organization’s competitive advantage, Perry Rotella advocates that CIOs should step up and lead the protection of the organization’s IP. What Good is Innovation if It’s Not Protected? (Forbes)

After publishing his weekly career management newsletter for the last 10 years, Nick Corcodilos lists four top Q&As his readers have cited among their favorites from the past editions. 10th Anniversary Special: 4 Top Answers from The Archive (Ask The Headhunter)

Referring to an article on The New York Times, Bob Sutton reflects his viewpoints of how leaders can leverage hierarchy and respect to enhance performance and well-being among the people he leads. Rare Wisdom from Citrix CEO Mark Templeton about Hierarchy and Respect (Work Matters)

Drawing parallels between Texas Hold’em and job searches, Laura Brandenburg provides suggestions on how to stay in the game long enough so you will eventually find a winning hand. Agonizing Over Your Resume? Go All In! (Bridging the Gap)

When it comes to identifying interpersonal challenges in successful people, Marshall Goldsmith explains why the higher you go, the more your problems are behavioral. People Skills (Marshall Goldsmith Personal Blog)

While it is important for organizations to develop, disseminate, and support codes of conduct, Bret Simmons advocates that it is just as wise to design systems that attract, retain, and promote those people who live and work above the code. Above The Code (Positive Organizational Behavior)

When it comes to managing our own careers, Gianpiero Petriglieri, associate professor at INSEAD, explains in this video what we can all learn from artists. The Art of Career Development (Harvard Business Review)

Fresh Links Sundae – September 2, 2012 Edition

Fresh Links Sundae encapsulates some pieces of information I have come across during the past week. They maybe ITSM related or not entirely. Often they are from the people whose work resonates with me, and I hope you will find something of value.

I am a fan of the DevOps concept, and I freely admit it. Robert Stroud gives his observations and suggests potential projects that could be suitable for embracing DevOps. DevOps, fad, reality or simply the death of ITIL (CA on Service Management)

While most system monitoring systems focus on watching performance and availability anomalies, Sasha Gilenson suggests that neglecting change and configuration monitoring can also result in just as much as suffering. Monitoring Sucks (and What We Can Do About It) (Evolven Blog)

Coming back from the LEADit 2012 conference, Aprill Allen explains why the approach of collaboration is more practical to than the practice of knowing and controlling everything. The Future is Practical (Knowledge Bird)

Using examples from his firm, Perry Rotella describes what strategy an IT leader can leverage to track and to incorporate emerging technologies for facilitating business growth. To Claim the Role of Chief Innovation Officer, Think about IT Differently (Forbes)

While a merger can be a tremendous change management event, Patrick Gray suggests what IT leaders should do to successfully manage the transition. IT leaders: How to survive a merger (TechRepublic)

Modeling a complex business process can sometimes result in participants being stuck on an analysis exercise and unable to move forward. Laura Brandenburg shows us the ways to get ourselves unstuck when that happens. 5 Ways to End Analysis Paralysis on Your Next Business Process Model (Bridging the Gap)

Considering failure can be a great teaching tool, Jeff Haden describes one type of failure that should also be embraced. Most Important Failure You Haven’t Embraced (

With the availability of the social media platforms, Ted Rubin explains how advertising activities differs from the marketing ones and how social media is facilitating both sets of activities. Is Social Blurring the Lines between Advertising and Marketing? (Straight Talk)

Learning from the recent episode where United Airlines mishandled the travel of an unaccompanied minor, Bob Sutton discusses his thoughts on the different levels of organizational accountability. There is also a follow-up post on this topic. Felt Accountability: Some Emerging Thoughts (Work Matters)

Businesses continue to change, and changes often result in loss or casualty somewhere within the organization. It is always refreshing to see something that is a straight talk without the usual corporate double-speak and fluff. PopCap Update from John Vechey (Blog Ride!)

Fresh Links Sundae – July 8, 2012 Edition

Fresh Links Sundae encapsulates some pieces of information I have come across during the past week. They maybe ITSM related or not entirely. Often they are from the people whose work resonates with me, and I hope you will find something of value.

Taking a customer point of view, Stephen Mann discussed 12 areas where the service desk should consider for delivering outstanding customer service. 12 Pieces Of Advice For IT Service Desks – From A Customer! (Forrester Blogs)

Presented at the recent OVUM conference on ITSM in London, Barclay Rae showed us some solid, practical tips on how to get your ITSM effort off the ground and running. Tips for ITSM Goodness (Barclay Rae Website)

If you are working on putting together a monitoring or event management practice, Alicia Choo posted a couple of sample documents that may help in your endeavor. My take on ITSM and IT Governance: Event Management (Choofca’s Brain Dump)

With the recent service outage of the Royal Bank of Scotland and a few other banking institutions, Ros Satar tried to piece together a coherent view of this major incident and what we can learn from it. The RBS Glitch – A Wake Up Call? (The ITSM Review)

With technology often being the center of innovation, Perry Rotella talked about how IT organizations, large and small, can create environments that encourage innovation and agility to facilitate growth. CIO = Chief INNOVATION Officer (IT Transforming Business)

With the competing views of IT talent shortage vs. personnel glut, Robert Cringely discussed why this is such a difficult labor issue in IT. IT class warfare — It’s not just IBM (I, Cringely)

Because not everyone share one single viewpoint, Seth Godin explained why tailoring your messages to different audience bases is important for getting your points across. Superman, Batman and worldviews (Seth’s Blog)

Even though both strategies may sound similar, Jeff Hayden explained why one strategy will come out way ahead over the long run. Business Strategy: Be an Opportunist or Opportunistic? (Owner’s Manual)

Concerned about the over-consumption of information by our minds with the social web technologies, Anna Farmery gave suggestions on keeping our minds fit. Exercises for the Obese Mind (The Engaging Brand)

With pay for performance a common practice these days, Bob Sutton discussed why one particular practice, the forced-ranking system, can sometimes create unnecessary internal competitions and stifle cooperation. Dysfunctional Internal Competition at Microsoft: We’ve seen the enemy, and it is us! (Work Matters)

Fresh Links Sundae – July 1, 2012 Edition

Fresh Links Sundae encapsulates some pieces of information I have come across during the past week. They maybe ITSM related or not entirely. Often they are from the people whose work resonates with me, and I hope you will find something of value.

Leveraging the results from a recent Forrester report, Stephen Mann explained how the combination of service management and automation can produce amplified benefits for business. IT Service Management AND Automation: Now That’s A Double Whammy Of Business-Enabling Goodness (Forrester Blogs)

Observing the increasing demand for business innovation leveraging technology innovations, Robert Stroud advocated that the need to balance operational excellence with strategic portfolio management is becoming a primary discipline for IT professionals. Evolve From Managing Technology to Delivering Innovative Business (CA on Service Management)

Following up to his earlier tutorial on service catalog, Rob England gave his take on what makes a technical service catalog and how his position differs from the ITIL book authors. What is a Technical Service Catalogue? (The ITSM Review)

Citing two potential causes of compensation practices and 24/7 career demands, Bob Lewis hypothesized why people fall into the trap of thinking other people’s work should be easy. What makes work easy [] (IS Survivor Publishing)

As the use of jargons continues to persist in IT, Jeff Wayman explained how jargons can be obstacles to good communication and collaboration. Help Desk Jargon: The 10 Worst Offenders (ITIL Edition) (ITSM Lens)

Although many of us fail to escape from the Parkinson’s Law, Mark Horstman proposed a different way to look at how we use time. Parkinson Owns Us (Manager Tools)

Using examples from other aspiring business analysts, Laura Brandenburg demonstrated that many techniques used by the blog readers to analyze operations or processes are very closely related and quite transferrable as BA techniques. How to Demonstrate That You Are a Business Analyst: 3 Real Examples of Transferable Skills (Bridging the Gap)

Drawing from her coaching experience, Anna Farmery gave suggestions on what to do to live the life you want, instead of living the life you get. How to Get the Best Out of Yourself (The Engaging Brand)

Leveraging the information from a recent study, Don Tennant discussed why employees who are mentored are more likely to give similar developmental support to others. Employees Who Are Mentored Pay It Forward, Study Finds (ITBusinessEdge)

On the lighter side, Dr. Sutton shared this great piece from another reader. A Different Version of the Creation Myth (Work Matters)

Fresh Links Sundae – April 22, 2012 Edition

Fresh Links Sundae encapsulates some pieces of information I have come across during the past week. They maybe ITSM related or not entirely. Often they are from the people whose work I admire, and I hope you will find something of value.

Why a “rules based” approach to Change Management always fails Glen Taylor discussed why rule-based change management practices have limited effectiveness and why risk-based approach is the better target. (ITSM Portal)

COBIT 5 Miscellany Geoff Harmer gave his initial impression of COBIT 5 and how it differs from the previous version of the framework. (ITSM Portal)

IT Metrics Planning: The Business Meeting Julie Montgomery suggested ways for IT and business to work together and come up with metrics that can help both organizations. (Plexent Blog)

At the Helm of the Data Refinery: Key Considerations for CIOs Perry Rotella discussed that “data refinery” is the new strategic operating model for companies and why CIO is the executive best positioned to lead the enterprise forward in this new model. (Forbes)

5 Ways to Access the Power of the Hive for ITIL Initiatives Jeff Wayman discussed ways to leverage a diverse group of people for the benefit of ITSM initiatives. (ITSM Lens)

7 Benefits of Using a Known Error Database Simon Morris gave an in-depth discussion of KEDB and suggested ways to extract values and benefits from it. (The ITSM Review)

The ABC of ITSM: Why Building The Right Process Matters Ben Cody discussed the human aspect of ITSM and why a positive dedication to “process” should be at the heart of how organizations solve complex IT services challenges. (The ITSM Review)

How to Make Your Company More Like Apple Daniel Burrus talked about how companies, large or small, can build their future by competing on things other than price. (Strategic Insights Blog)

An Asshole Infested Workplace — And How One Guy Survived It Surviving a toxic work environment is not a trivial undertaking – you do what you could and had to do without spreading the toxic atmosphere further. (Bob Sutton)

How to fix IBM in a week Robert Cringely wrote a long series of blog entries discussing what is going on within IBM, what is wrong, and how to fix it, maybe. (I, Cringely)

Fresh Links Sundae – March 25, 2012 Edition

Fresh Links Sundae encapsulates some pieces of information I have come across during the past week. They maybe ITSM related or not entirely. Often they are from the people whose work I admire, and I hope you will find something of value.

Robert Stroud talked about how the role of IT has changed from a pure operational role to a more strategic and business-oriented one. Transformation of the role of the CIO (CA on Service Management)

Rob England discussed that many organizations have not managed or governed their IT function effectively and can do more. Organisations have failed their IT like bad parents (The IT Skeptic)

Charles Betz examined a recent survey on IT demand management and discussed some preliminary findings. IT cannot prioritize (Charles Betz)

Jeff Wayman made some suggestions on how service desk can help its users to combat hacking and protect themselves. 5 Ways a Help Desk Can Stop a Hacker (ITSM Lens)

Don Tennant discussed a research finding where leaders and employees having very different views on who is helping to promote innovation and who is not helping. Research Shows Company Leaders Are Stifling Innovation (From Under the Rug)

Damon Edwards discussed how reducing batch sizes can improve the effectiveness of DevOps within your organization. DevOps Lessons from Lean: Small Batches Improve Flow (- Blog – dev2ops)

Brad Power discussed two examples of IT playing a leadership role in helping two organizations drive competitive advantage. Look to IT for Process Innovation? (Brad Power – Harvard Business Review)

Bob Sutton talked about how effective leaders practice both leadership and management principles together. Hollow Visions, Bullshit, Lies and Leadership Vs. Management (Work Matters)

Marshall Goldsmith discussed a simple, yet effective system for getting better at providing positive recognition. How Do I Provide Meaningful Recognition? (Marshall Goldsmith)

Finally, a simple yet informative explanation of social media for a simple-minded individual like me. Social media explained with donuts (