Posts Tagged “effort days”

There is a simple equation that is the basis for most of the planning and tracking calculations I use with projects and teams. One permutation of this equation–for calculating Velocity–is well-known to many Agilists. This common permutation can be expressed as: v=e/t or Velocity (v) = Effort (e) / Time (t).

Casual readers beware. As advertised above, this blog entry uses math. Read the rest of this entry »

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Whether you are an individual team member or a department manager, just about all of us–at one time or another–have been asked to produce an estimated work plan for some project or deliverable. And just about all of us-—at one time or another–have opened up Excel or Project, thrown in ten or a hundred tasks, slapped absolute-guess-estimates on each task, scrutinized the total until feeling comfortable with it, published the plan to get that manager or sponsor off our back, then moved on to actually doing the work, and never looked at that plan ever again.

This is not planning. This is storytelling. And it can kill your project. All of us have done it with small stuff. I’ve done it with small stuff. But some of us–I’d wager–have done it with 10 million dollar projects. And storytelling killed those projects, too. Read the rest of this entry »

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I get a variety of reactions from both doers and managers when I tell them that the average individual contributor on a project team only completes three effort days of delivery-related work in a week. Usually the reaction is surprise. Surprise the number is so low. Surprise I’m willing to admit the number is so low. And surprise that this is a perfectly acceptable amount of work to complete each week. Read the rest of this entry »

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I’ve been using Ideal Days to help teams and help me plan work and measure progress since 1999. In most environments, this agile tool is far superior to the use of any duration or date-driven approach. Now, however, I much prefer the term Effort Days. Read the rest of this entry »

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