Tipping Point

This week we continue our re-read of The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell (Buy a copy and read along). In Chapter one, Gladwell suggests that there are three factors that impact whether an idea or product crosses a tipping point; they are the law of the few, the stickiness factor, and the power of context. Chapter one introduces these concepts and presents real-life examples to illustrate the factors.   (more…)

Tipping Point

Today we begin our re-read of The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell.  My wife and I originally read the book in the early 00s.  We will be reading from is the paperback version published in 2002 by Back Bay Books (15th printing).  The book has an introduction, 8 chapters, an afterword (the 2002 version had a new afterword), endnotes and an index for a total of 302 pages. Dust off your copy or buy a new copy — I think I loaned my original copy to someone five years ago and I suspect it is not coming back.  I am reading my wife’s copy. (more…)


I have been vacillating between an intense discussion of Bad Blood and a terse and blunt statement about Theranos.  In the end, I took a middle path. If you want to dive into the detail again, grab the book and the follow our re-read through it.  If you want the later,  the bottom line is — sleazy company, bad board and sociopathic people at the top.  Now the middle path. (more…)

I decided to complete the content portion of the re-read this week.   From a team-level perspective, I believe we can all recognize some if not all of the behaviors seen in Bad Blood, albeit on a far less sociopathic scale. If this were a business novel, it would be easy to assume that the behavior shown in the book is hyperbole used to make a grand point.  In Theranos’s case, the supporting reading I have done suggests the book is somewhat understated. Why do people take the abuse? Why is money the only thing that matters to some? Why do some people say yes to doing work they know is ethically wrong? I am not sure this book answers those questions nor do I think my analysis can shed light on the psychological rationale of individuals; however, next week we will wrap up our re-read by reflecting on the impact of Theranos like behavior at the team level.  Remember that we will re-read The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell next (get a copy soon). (more…)

My intent is to complete our re-read of Bad Blood, Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup in three more weeks.  The book has 24 chapters and an epilogue, therefore there will be two more weeks on the book and then a wrap-up.  We will re-read The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell next. This week we tackle three more chapters in which we learn money is thicker than blood (something I learned working in a department store during college), and that people with a moral basis for ethics always have a breaking point (something I have only had to tangentially face).
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As mentioned earlier, the Software Process and Measurement Cast blog featured approximately 212 entries in 2018 (about the same number as 2017).  What was astounding was that the traffic was up 68% over last year

The top six entries published this year were:  

Life Cycle of A User Story: Hierarchy

Turn the Ship Around! By L. David Marquet Re-read Saturday Week 7, Chapters 8 – 9: Change, In a Word and Welcome Aboard Sante Fe

Agile Where Agile Fears to Tread: Commercial Off The Shelf Packages

Life Cycle of A User Story: States

Actionable Agile Metrics for Predictability by Daniel S. Vacanti, Re-read Saturday Week 11: Introduction to Cycle Time Scatterplots

Guest Post: Why an Agile Center of Excellence is a Really Bad Idea

 

Note – the data is for direct page views – the home page of the blog gets the lion’s share of the views, therefore, it is difficult to attribute the data to a single blog entry. (more…)

We are re-reading Bad Blood, Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup by John Carreyrou (published by Alfred A. Knopf, 2018 – Buy a copy and read along). This week we tackle two related chapters.  Over the course of the book to date, we have seen secrets and lies (hence the title), intellectual theft, poor diagnostics and careers being destroyed.  This week we add a suicide to the hot mess that is Theranos. (more…)