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Roundtable on Project Management:
A SHAPE Forum Dialogue

edited by James Bullock,
Gerald M. Weinberg
and Marie Benesh

ISBN: 978-0-932633-48-4  
©2001  200 pages   softcover  
$15.95 (plus shipping)

Subject(s): Communication Skills, Software project Management

*For UPS Ground within U.S. only.
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Wayne Angel | James Bach | Jim Batterson | Marie Benesh | Rick Brenner | James Bullock | Brian Crook | Jerry M. Denman | Esther Derby | Joe Dindo | Dale Emery | Danny R. Faught | Pat Ferdinandi | Jesse M. Gordon | Elisabeth Hendrickson | Kevin Huigens | Steve Jackson | Jim Jarrett | Steve Jenkin | Dave Kleist | Karen Lopez | Pat McGee | Graham Oakes | George Olsen | Bill Pardee | Sue Petersen | Dwayne Phillips | Brian Pioreck | Brian Richter | Sharon Marsh Roberts | Stiles M. Roberts II | Johanna Rothman | Bertrand Salle | Brett Schuchert | Bill Seitz | Daniel Starr | John Suzuki | James Tierney | Jerry Weinberg

Wayne Angel

Wayne Angel has thirty years of experience in various aspects of information systems technology. He has led world-class teams in the implementation of complex systems using leading-edge technologies, and has served as the system architect on projects as large as $500 million and as the project manager on projects as large as $100 million. Wayne is currently an independent consultant developing science-based foresight simulations for strategic decision support systems. He holds a Ph.D. in physics, systems, and business administration.


James Bach             www.satisfice.com

James Bach is the founder and principal consultant of Satisfice, Inc., a software testing laboratory in Front Royal, Virginia. He specializes in rapid software testing techniques. James learned his craft on the job at Apple Computer and Borland International, and through the ministrations of many wonderful mentors and colleagues.


Jim Batterson

Jim Batterson is an independent consultant living in Richmond, Virginia. He designs and builds business applications, specializing in financial and pension systems. He is interested in all aspects of the human side of systems and in the enduring principles of systems.


Marie A. Benesh

Marie is principal of Benesh & Associates, an IT management consulting organization. Marie has a wide range of experience in IT management, advising clients on issues such as managing IT human resources, IT strategy development and implementation, organization design, IT process engineering, and large-scale project definition and management.

Marie has implemented leading practices in software engineering for organizations, and is experienced in the management of application development organizations and in project assessment and consulting in PeopleSoft®, an ERP-based system. Skilled in program management, infrastructure implementation and management, release management, IT/user test planning, and implementation within the university and corporate arenas, she consults with major universities and Fortune 500 corporations.


Richard Brenner           www.ChacoCanyon.com

Rick Brenner is principal of Chaco Canyon Consulting. He works with technology and software organizations that want to make complex products and need state-of-the-art teamwork, and with organizations that want to create innovative products by building stronger relationships between their people. In his twenty years as a software developer, software development manager, entrepreneur, and consultant, he has developed valuable insights into the interactions between people in a technical environment, and between people and the technological media in which they work.

Rick holds a Master’s degree in Electrical Engineering from MIT. His current interests focus on improving personal and organizational effectiveness in abnormal situations, as in the case of dramatic change, technical emergencies, and high-pressure project situations. He has written a number of essays on these subjects, and publishes Point Lookout, a weekly e-mail newsletter available at his Website.


James Bullock

James Bullock is currently the QA services manager for Amazon.com, a "dot-com" company where, he claims, his job is not an oxymoron. In his more than eighteen years of building systems, from lab automation and high-volume embedded controls to enterprise data warehousing and ERP deployments, he has been everything from a coding "grunt" to a high-priced consultant. Some of his embedded controls are still deployed, and a data warehouse he architected six years ago is still in use, among other apparent successes. More important to James is the contact he maintains with some folks from previous projects–people who not only built something good, but enjoyed doing it.

Over time, James has become more interested in how we go about building systems than in the systems themselves. Jerry Weinberg’s SHAPE forum allows him to explore that.


Brian Crook

Brian Crook has been developing programs since 1965 and has been an enthusiast of advanced systems methodologies since meeting Jerry Weinberg in 1967. Although his resume lists more than thirty programming languages, several operating systems, and numerous computer architectures, he is most interested in the human side of computing these days. Born in Minnesota, Brian has worked in Minneapolis, Chicago, Southern California, and in Michigan, where he has lived for the past thirty years. He shares his home with a five-year-old rottweiler.


Jerry M. Denman

Jerry Denman is an IT architect for IBM Global Services Enterprise Application Integration practice and has spent his entire career in IT consulting. He has been integrating Jerry Weinberg’s advice into his consulting skills for a number of years. A graduate of the Weinberg and Weinberg Problem Solving Leadership course, he currently lives in the metro Washington, D.C., area and travels extensively. When he is home, he spends time with his son, Michael, and his cat, Java.


Esther Derby      www.estherderby.com

Esther Derby has more than twenty years’ experience in software development. She’s been a programmer, systems manager, project manager, and internal consultant. She currently runs her own consulting firm, Esther Derby Associates, based in Minneapolis. Esther works with people to increase their effectiveness in understanding and managing complex systems, such as software development organizations and software development projects.


Joe Dindo

Joe Dindo is currently working as an independent consultant providing coaching to small business clients in the health care field. He spends time at his wife’s high-quality dental practice providing coaching, training, and operational management. By far, this is Joe’s most challenging and stimulating work, since he has to apply his own advice where he would see the results first-hand! He is very proud of their achievements and the environment they’ve created for the betterment of patients and staff.

Prior to his small-business focus, Joe had more than ten years of experience working in all phases of the systems engineering life cycle, its supporting processes and process improvement activities. His software engineering experience encompassed a wide range of roles in software development using multiple life cycle models and methodologies.


Dale Emery         www.dhemery.com

Dale Emery is a process architect in the IT organization at Sun Microsystems. He works with cross-organizational teams to define, implement, promote, and support improved processes. He finds his greatest challenges and rewards in striving to create processes that serve the deeply held values of individuals in organizations.

Dale has worked in the software industry for more than twenty years, as an engineer, manager, process innovator, and consultant. For his design contributions to Cabletron Systems’ Spectrum network management system, Dale was awarded two U.S. patents. He has consulted to numerous IT and software product development organizations on problems of software development, project management, and team and interpersonal effectiveness. He has developed a special interest and expertise in understanding how people respond to change.

Underlying all of Dale’s work is his personal mission to help people create value, joy, and meaning in their work.


Danny R. Faught

Danny R. Faught is an independent consultant focusing on software quality issues. His eight years of experience in the computer industry include serving as technical lead for a software test group, doing internal consulting as part of a productivity and quality group, and consulting with outside clients in the area of software testing and risk management. Danny has spoken at a number of software industry events. He is the cofounder of the "swtest-discuss" mailing list.


Patricia L. Ferdinandi           www.SBDi-consulting.com

Patricia L. Ferdinandi is the president of Strategic Business Decisions, a company specializing in requirements engineering, project management, and process improvement. She is dedicated to assisting corporations improve their return on technological investments. Through the use of best practices and experience in software development, Pat’s company assists organizations in reducing the risk of software failure. This is accomplished through consulting, training, seminars, and published works. Pat’s latest contribution is the introduction of a Requirement Pattern (including Anti-Pattern) that assists in capturing a fuller requirement set for any type of product. The Requirement Pattern is currently being used by Fortune 500 companies.


Jesse M. Gordon

Jesse M. Gordon is a software performance analyst for IBM in Austin, Texas. He creates systems-level views of how software systems are put together and of how their components interact. These understandings make it possible for him to improve the software’s performance.

Jesse joined IBM in 1990 after earning a B.A. in Mathematics from the University of Pennsylvania and a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Michigan. Between undergraduate and graduate school, he worked for three years as a software systems analyst for BDM International in McLean, Virginia.



Elisabeth Hendrickson        www.qualitytree.com

Elisabeth Hendrickson is an independent consultant specializing in software quality and testing. With more than twelve years in the software field, Elisabeth has been a technical writer, tester, programmer, help desk technician, and manager, sometimes simultaneously. Read more of Elisabeth’s thoughts on software management, quality, and testing on her Website.


Kevin Huigens

Kevin Huigens is a principal consultant for a software management consulting firm. A graduate of the December 1993 PSL workshop, Kevin has nineteen years of experience in all aspects of software management: coding, testing, requirements analysis, project management, and more. Like Jerry Weinberg, he is a die-hard Cubs fan and plans on seeing the Cubs in the World Series at Wrigley Field.


Steven D. Jackson

Steven D. Jackson is principal management engineer at S. D. Jackson & Associates, an international management consulting organization specializing in assisting firms to substantially increase profits through internally driven process improvements. Steve has considerable experience in implementing quality system processes and has worked for more than thirty years in all aspects of engineering and project management.

An international speaker and author, Steve has developed and delivered many training courses on quality and management subjects. As a Certified Quality Auditor and Certified Quality Manager, Steve has taught certification preparation classes for local sections of the American Society for Quality. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Engineering/Business Management and a Master’s in Computer Science from Nova University in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida.

Steve enjoys backpacking in the mountains and is a competition handgun shooter.


James Jarrett

James Jarrett is a lead software designer at Rockwell Automation in Cleveland, Ohio. Specializing in interaction design, requirements engineering, and object-oriented development, he leads teams to deliver products that delight their users. Jim thrives on being a catalyst in his organization, helping it move toward best practices and high-performance teams. With varied interests including sociology, science policy, and digital media, he brings a multidisciplinary perspective and a strong intuitive sense to his work and his world.


Steve Jenkin

Steve Jenkin is a twenty-five-year veteran of the IT industry. He has worked in the fields of programming, operations, and administration on maintenance, development, or re-development of commercial and telecommunications systems. He is currently a contract Unix systems administrator.


Dave Kleist

Dave Kleist has worked in the IT field for more than fifteen years as a project manager, technical lead, account manager, and instructor. His current projects involve data warehousing and data marts. When he’s not working, he keeps active by chasing his four-year-old son.


Karen López           www.infoadvisors.com

Karen López, I.S.P., is principal consultant at InfoAdvisors.com. Karen has fifteen years of experience consulting to organizations that are initiating large, multi-project information systems programs. She specializes in providing practical, real-world advice to project managers, developers, information architects, and IT executives. She lives in Toronto with her husband, Rob, and her very own herd of five cats.


Pat McGee

Pat McGee has programmed for all of his adult life, in many different languages (including English), and for many different processors, large and small (including homo sapiens). Pat has written programs to do scientific modeling, process improvement, fraud detection, computer graphics, business systems, embedded control systems, and to break other programs. He has led teams and has been called the "best boss" and the "worst boss" ever, though not on the same day or by the same person, yet.


Graham Oakes

Graham Oakes grew up in Australia, studied geophysics, drifted into high performance computing and image analysis via a Ph.D. in the U.K., and finally landed in software engineering. In that role, he’s worked in scientific computing, command and control, games, and financial services. He is currently a director of technology for Sapient, in London.


George Olsen

George Olsen is a cofounder and former project leader of WSP, the Web Standards Project (www.webstandards.org). He has led Web development efforts at How2HQ.com and Parago, and has served as design director/Web architect at 2-Lane Media and information architect at Scient. George consults, writes, and speaks on Web development issues and has taught Web design classes at UCLA Extension.


William J. Pardee        www.pardee-quality-methods.com

Bill Pardee began his career as a theoretical physicist specializing in elementary particles. In eighteen years of industrial research, he moved from modeling flaw detection to modeling quality lost in the manufacturing process, to process control, to software quality and concurrent engineering. His desire to improve the way things work expanded to include organizations and people. He discovered in Quality Function Deployment a method to increase the value of work for both employees and their employers. In 1992, he resigned his position as a principal scientist of information sciences at Rockwell International to start Pardee Quality Methods, through which he helps a wide range of people do their jobs a little better.


Sue Petersen        www.networkboy.com/suep

Sue Petersen is an anthropologist by training, a programmer by avocation, and a manager by necessity. She and her husband have owned and operated a small plumbing repair shop since 1979. Sue started programming in 1985, when she bought her first PC for the business. Unable to find a simple database for the business, she created one herself.

She started writing professionally in 1995, when she sold her first article to Windows Tech Journal. She wrote a regular book review column for Visual Developer Magazine for many years, and freelances for other publications as well.

Sue’s main professional interests are database design, and software engineering and management. She is currently programming in a Win32/Delphi environment.


Dwayne Phillips

Dwayne Phillips has been a systems and computer engineer with the U.S. government since 1980. He has written articles for magazines such as The C/C++ Users Journal and The Cutter IT Journal, and is author of The Software Project Manager’s Handbook. A native of Sweetwater, Louisiana, he has a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Louisiana State University. He resides in Reston, Virginia, with his wife, Karen, and three sons.


Brian Pioreck

Brian Pioreck first fell in love with computers in 1978 while studying for a career in ornamental horticulture. With just nine credits left to complete his degree in the subject, he followed his heart and dropped out of school to pursue computer work. He taught himself to program on a Vic-20, and with the help of night school and vigorous self-study, he found himself in the business of growing technology and technical teams instead of growing flowers.

Brian has held various positions in software development, technical management, and management consulting over the last seventeen years. Currently, he concentrates on raising organizational awareness of human systems and of methods to improve performance. Brian currently helps development organizations hit their market window with a balanced combination of features, performance, and quality.


Brian Richter

Brian Richter has been a professional software developer on Long Island, New York, for eighteen years. He started out writing video games, branched into character generators and teleprompters, and now writes software for radar and air-traffic control systems. Outside of work, he is an accomplished composer, pianist, and musician who directs and performs in musical events and shows on Long Island.


Sharon Marsh Roberts

Sharon Marsh Roberts works with large corporations on projects that are new to the corporations–on implementations her clients would prefer to avoid. She uses her business and technical expertise to facilitate multidisciplinary teams, bringing together technical experts and business leaders to tackle new and difficult projects. Sharon has worked in financial reporting and systems for companies in the entertainment, banking, insurance, and pharmaceutical industries.

Sharon’s projects have included systems to implement executive and technical leaders’ compensation plans, an FDA-mandated system to identify and collect nonclinical payments to investigators on clinical studies, an insurance system to pay physicians in managed-care arrangements, and numerous financial reporting systems.


Stiles M. Roberts II

Stiles M. Roberts II has had system, database, program design, and technical architecture responsibility for mission-critical applications across multiple platforms. This work has included major project planning and management responsibility. Stiles has engaged in development, enhancement, and conversion projects over the course of the last ten years and has always brought them to a successful conclusion. His management consulting activities, in the same time frame, have yielded tens of millions of dollars in cost savings or revenue enhancement.


Johanna Rothman         www.jrothman.com

Johanna Rothman observes and consults on managing high technology product development. As founder and principal of Rothman Consulting Group, she works with clients to find the leverage points that will increase their effectiveness as organizations and as managers, helping them ship the right product at the right time, and recruit and retain the best people.

A frequent speaker and author specializing in the topic of managing high technology product development, Johanna has written articles for Software Development, Cutter IT Journal, IEEE Software, Crosstalk, IEEE Computer, Software Testing and Quality Engineering, Catapulse, and StickyMinds.com. She is publisher of Reflections, a quarterly newsletter about managing product development, and she serves on the clinical faculty of The Gordon Institute at Tufts University, a practical management degree program for engineers. Johanna leads workshops in the areas of project management, software quality, and software management.


Bertrand Sallé

Bertrand Sallé builds and leads teams. His approach is to focus his teams on problem solving and on architecting solutions that work pragmatically. Over the last fifteen years, he has developed strong management, risk identification, and mitigation skills. He is the author of six patents.

A French citizen, Bertrand works internationally within Lucent Technologies on systems, software, and network architectures, observing, implementing, and learning about things that work and things that don’t.


Brett Schuchert

Brett Schuchert’s most recent work has dealt with software architecture and with forming the chaos at the beginning of a project. He is a teacher, mentor, and consultant.

On and off since 1985, Brett has taught courses on subjects ranging from computer literacy to the formal analysis and design of software systems. He has also served as architect, technical lead, and individual contributor on several projects in several domains.


Bill Seitz        webseitz.editThisPage.com

Bill Seitz is vice president of technology and product development for Ipath, a virtual corporate law firm. Previously, he spent five years as the technical member of the founding team of Medscape, the leading information site for physicians. He is the author of a chapter on long-term project management in Buying Web Services.


Dan Starr

Dan Starr is a consulting member of technical staff at Lucent Technologies/Bell Labs in Naperville, Illinois. For the last twenty-five years, he has worked in the telecommunications system business, slowly moving from software developer, to software architect, to system architect, to system architecture process architect, to generalist-reviewer-consultant-opinion-generator-and-occasional-author. He finds human beings far more interesting than computers.

When Dan is not working, he likes riding his motorcycle, assuming the snow has melted. When he is not riding or shoveling snow, he may be found at work on a sprawling, semi-autobiographical novel about time travel and hairspray.


John Suzuki

John Suzuki is founder and principal consultant of JKS & Associates. He currently provides technical consulting in software requirements analysis, software design, software testing, software risk management, software project management, ISO 9000-3/TickIT software auditing, software process improvement, software metrics, and the Software Engineering Institute’s Capability Maturity Model assessment and auditing.

His consulting engagements have covered both small development projects and large-scale multi-site development. John’s clients include both small and large companies and projects in the manufacturing, banking, finance, entertainment, Internet, computer hardware, software, medical device, pharmaceutical, and medical laboratory industries.

In addition to his consulting practice, John has presented talks at numerous national symposiums, participated in conference panels, authored papers, contributed to two books, and holds three patents. Presently, he is serving on an industry/FDA task force to develop a software quality audit standard using ISO 12207 for the medical device community.


James Tierney

In 1978, James Tierney was writing diagnostic programs for Amdahl mainframes. The idea of enabling computers to tell you what was wrong with them appealed to him, so he started writing programs that would tell you what was wrong with your software. After spending a decade as a software developer, he went to business school and caught the quality bug, thanks to his advisor, Art Swersey, a disciple of Deming and Shingo. Since 1989, he has been a test manager, training manager, director of test, and test architect at Microsoft, applying Japanese, American, and European quality models to the software development process. In the 1990’s, he met Jerry Weinberg, who introduced him to Virginia Satir’s work, which makes organizational change more painless and effective.


Gerald M. Weinberg        www.geraldmweinberg.com

Jerry Weinberg has worked on transforming software organizations for more than forty years. He is author, coauthor, or editor of scores of articles and books that cover all phases of software development. Innovative as a systems thinker, Jerry’s classic works include Are Your Lights On?, The Psychology of Computer Programming, and An Introduction to General Systems Thinking. Jerry’s books on phases of the software life cycle include Exploring Requirements, Rethinking Systems Analysis and Design, The Handbook of Walkthroughs, Inspections, and Technical Reviews, and General Principles of Systems Design. His books on leadership include Amplifying Your Effectiveness, Becoming a Technical Leader, The Secrets of Consulting, and the Quality Software Management four-volume series.

To many, Jerry is as well known for his workshops for software leaders as he is for his books. Workshops include Problem Solving Leadership (PSL), the Congruent Organizational Change-Shop, and Systems Effectiveness Management (SEM). He is also a cofounder of the AYE Conference.


Table of Contents
Excerpt: "Roundtable Discussion: Dealing With Impending Disaster"

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Roundtable on Technical Leadership: A SHAPE Forum Dialogue

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