Fresh Links Sundae – December 7, 2014 Edition

http://www.dreamstime.com/-image28379626Fresh 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!

Having a functional architecture is a key to deriving IT values for any organization, and architecture calls for sound design principles. Bob Lewis recommends at least five areas to consider when putting together the design principles for your architecture. Ben Franklin, turkeys, and design principles (IS Survivor Publishing)

As we jump from one data analytics problem to another, we often need to get up to speed on a new dataset quickly. A classical and under-utilized approach for becoming familiar with the new data problem is Exploratory Data Analysis (EDA). Jason Brownlee explains the EDA techniques and tactics that you can use. Understand Your Problem and Get Better Results Using Exploratory Data Analysis (Machine Learning Mastery)

Verified inventory is one of the several key elements of IT assets management success. Martin Thompson shares techniques he has used in the past to verify hardware inventory. Verifying Asset Accuracy (The ITAM Review)

As business analysts, there will always be value in getting more done well and in less time. Laura Brandenburg talks about some of the most common time wasters she sees in business analysis. 5 Business Analyst Time-Wasters (Bridging the Gap)

For many organizations, an ITSM initiative often represents a major change, and Organizational Change Management (OCM) is the centerpiece to success. Mike DePolis discusses some of the most important aspects and actions to consider for an OCM effort in your organization. Project success with Organizational Change Management (OCR) (The ITSM Review)

Many organizations still perceive data quality projects to be a technical endeavor, but data quality requires an on-going, consistent change management effort. Such changes can often result in fear and resistance. Dylan Jones discusses ways to combat the fear and resistance to changes. Data quality mastery depends on change management essentials (The Data Roundtable)

Data or information Management within an organization can be at risk when data are in bad shape. Strong governance practices and stewardship can minimize risks and improve productivity. Pearl Zhu outlines the signals we should pay attention to when handling data governance within your organization. How to Capture the Signals of Data Governance Issues (Future of CIO)

Marshall Goldsmith believes how you define yourself will impact how successful you are at your job and even how happy you will be in life. He outlines four sources from which we can define our identity and encourages us to think about the considerations that go into how we define ourselves. Why You Should Get a Handle on Your Identity (Marshall Goldsmith Personal Blog)

Fresh Links Sundae – November 10, 2013 Edition

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-image-fruit-sundae-image15278271Fresh 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!

The interactions between customers and brands used to be relatively simple, but today many customers move through multiple channels when interacting with the same company. To put data analytics to work in improving the customer experience, Harald Fanderl, Dorian Stone, Alfonso Pulido recommends three things for companies to consider. Don’t Let Data Paralysis Stand Between You and Your Customers (Harvard Business Review)

Bob Lewis explains why the on-going healthcare.gov problems are nothing new to large-scale IT projects, and the integration and project sponsorship mistakes are entirely preventable. The scandal that wasn’t, but is (IS Survivor Publishing)

Although few organizations have projects as large as healthcare.gov, CEB has found that most organizations regularly run into troubled projects on a more modest scale. Andrew Horne recommends three approaches IT leaders can use to spot troubled projects earlier. How to Spot a Troubled Project (CEB’s IT Blog)

With many organizations assigning people with both project and service request work in a shared services model, ensuring that the resources are optimally allocated for value can be difficult.  Charles Betz suggests having a robust demand management mechanism is crucial to make things work. Is the shared services model dead? (lean4it)

Drawing from personal experience, Julie Montgomery shares her thoughts on customer service and how organization can leverage it to help promote its brand. [Rant] What is Customer “Delightion” And Why IT Should Give a Crap (Plexent Blog)

With the growing adoption of cloud services, some believe that software asset management (SAM) is becoming less relevant. Martin Thompson explains why the core SAM principles remain the same for cloud and why SAM is more crucial than ever. Navigating the cloud: Why SAM is more important than ever (The ITAM Review)

While many organizations believe they need to have always-on-with-no-downtime IT environment, few truly understand what it takes to achieve such high availability. Ryan Ogilvie suggests questions to ask in order to optimize availability while keeping the cost in check. Determining the Value of Bulletproof Availability (Service Management Journey)

While many organizations are becoming familiar with the Enterprise Architecture concepts, relatively few realize the significant value proposition provided by architecture assessments. Stephen Lahanas suggests the skillsets and activities needed for doing such assessment. The Value of Architecture Assessments (Technovation Talks)

From a recent study, Marshall Goldsmith was able to draw the conclusion that today’s ideal leader is a person who builds internal and external partnerships. He explains how successful leaders can do to take on this leadership requirement. Building Partnerships (Marshall Goldsmith Personal Blog)

The business case for using stakeholder management in a business or project can be difficult to justify for many organizations. Still, Lynda Bourne believes there is an excellent business case to be made and articulates the reasons why investing in effective stakeholder analytics is likely to deliver a valuable return on investment. The value of stakeholder management (Mosaicproject’s Blog)

Something else you might be interested in…

Microsoft has made a free Windows Server 2012 R2 e-book by Mitch Tulloch available for download. Free ebook: Introducing Windows Server 2012 R2 Technical Overview (MSDN Blogs)