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When working styles collide... and projects implode

We've all been there.

You're on a web-based project, and things are going well. At least, you think they are. The right people are selected for the appropriate functions, and everybody's clear on their roles.

You've got a designer, a developer, a project manager, and business stakeholders who are driving the requirements. You've got interlocked programs that tie in with your initiative, and you've got a fairly constrained budget to manage to.

The timeline is tight, but if everybody just does their job, you should make your dates.

The initial requirements are gathered, stakeholder expectations are set, and the first set of deliverables -- comps that define what the end product should (generally) look like -- is due.

But it doesn't get delivered. The comps seem stuck in a perpetual working state with the designer, as repeat revisions are created behind the scenes in consultation with other designers... out of sight of the other stakeholders and approvers.

Recent posts

Oh, look - another high tech mega-merger

Official: IBM to gobble Red Hat for $34bn – yes, the enterprise Linux biz Well, this is exciting.

I came across this announcement this morning while I was on my regularly scheduled exercise bike ride. I get up every morning and get on the bike for a while, checking email and the news. And what news is more intriguing to me, than the blending of a massive, (relatively) ancient technology behemoth with a 25-year-old Open Source champion.

From a CycloPraxis conjecture standpoint, it's a pretty tasty combination.

I mean, here you have the classic corporate giant that's pretty squarely placed in the Capitalizing/Enduring "quadrant", acquiring a company that's always struck me as an innovator, and certainly reads like an Author/Inventor culture, liberally sprinkled with a good dose of Building.

A Glassdoor review of Red Hat says:

I have been working at Red Hat full-time (More than a year) Pros - Wonderful environment where your coworkers actually listen to you!
- Freedom to…

It's been a while...

It's been over 12 years, since I last posted here. I first learned about CycloPraxis back in 2005, while I was browsing around ceo.com. I read about it. I read the materials. It made sense. I used it. And it was hugely beneficial. I started this blog, thinking I'd start writing about it, since it made so much sense and was so useful to me.

Then I cashed out of my high-rent corporate job, started my own business, and things got really busy.

You know how that goes. Best intentions and all that.

And that Staind song is running through my mind, right now. "It's been awhile, since..."

Wait - no - that song is about a completely different set of conditions. The song is about messing up your life and coming back to apologize. I'm happy to report, I have very little that I need to sincerely apologize for, from the past 12+ years. At least, not in the way Staind talks about.

So, never mind about Staind.

This post is coming from a far happier place, I'm happy to r…

The (Creative) Class Issues of "Career Evolution"

I've been thinking back to a job I used to have with a company that was very keen on "evolving" their employees to new and different positions over time. If you didn't move from position to position within the organization (taking on more responsibilities or adding to your skillset), you got yourself moved (through re-orgs or the addition of offshore staff who you trained to do your job). There was a huge HR initiative around helping people who'd been with the company longer than five years to find out what their career options were, in the face of increasing offshoring.

We were presented wtih a number of different paths:

1. Become a subject matter expert and serve as a mentor to others in the organization who could benefit from your experience.

2. Be more of a "team lead" and take on more project direction responsibilities.

3. Move into management and put your technical experience to good use.

4. Leave.

Now, while options 1-3 might seem like they're via…

Effective Career Choices

Following a layoff by a large business unit in the extending lifecycle stage, hundreds of professionals were forced to seek new employment. Most of the displaced workers naturally gravitated toward similar large organizations in the extending lifecycle stage. Several quarters later they were once again targets of downsizing. The late lifecycle businesses in this industry were undergoing some significant structural changes. The CycloPraxis Group was called to make a presentation on why the employment picture was so glum in the late lifecycle stage industry and on what differences an employee might expect from employment at other lifecycle stages. A few weeks after the presentation, the CycloPraxis Group received feedback from several of the displaced workers. CycloPraxis had given them the tools to re-evaluate their career and they were starting 2nd careers with building stage businesses. CycloPraxis had helped them see that their work preferences aligned with the builder praxis…

An introduction to CycloPraxis

CycloPraxis identifies the natural working preferences of employees according to the lifecycle stage of a business.

Much has been written about evolutionary stages of firms, disruptive technologies, new ventures, and high technology marketing, but it seems that large firms continue to experience difficulty in deploying the necessary new products and opening new markets necessary for tip line growth and employees continue to wind up with assignments for which they are poorly suited. CycloPraxis explains this behavior and prescribes novel approaches.

The classic match between worker and job is function: operations, manufacturing, marketing, finance, sales, development, etc. Certainly it is important to match job function to an individual's preferences. There is another equally important dimension to the fit between workers and their jobs: cyclopraxis.

And there's more to it, yet. The concepts of Praxis can be applied all across the board.

I came across this idea a few ye…