On tripwires, big breaks, and defining business objectives


Happy 5W-1h Sunday.

Here’s your dose of What? Who? Where? When? Why? How?, a curation of articles, podcasts and videos that piqued my curiosity this week.


WHAT path am I taking?

Tripwire 1: It’s tempting to trust the stakeholders’ pre-conceived notion about their problem: “If you just add this new field to the existing screen it will give us what we need.” Well, sure, that sounds good, but it’s never as simple as that, not with the nature of your business. 

Tripwires | Joe Newbert (Text at Newbert’s Blog)

WHO is giving me feedback?

It’s difficult to imagine how any practitioner could improve without seeing, seeking and considering feedback1.  There’s an often cited phrase that you’ve probably heard before, it’s the kind that adorns LinkedIN memes and motivational posters.  It is: “Feedback is a gift.”

Is Feedback Really A “Gift”? | Adrian Reed (Text at Adrian Reed’s Blog)

WHERE can I improve my public speaking?

Chances are, if you don’t know what’s most important for your audience to know, they won’t either. Don’t even begin your presentation without first understanding what, in simple terms, you want the audience to take away. This purpose and message becomes your guiding star.

11 Public Speaking Tips From the World’s Best Speakers & Communication Experts | Marta Kagan (Text at Hubspot)

WHEN will my big break come?

Some people get one. Most people don’t. But, if you’re reading this, it means that you’ve received more than one, perhaps a countless number of, little breaks.Access to tools, the benefit of the doubt, decent health, occasional peace of mind. Little breaks. Over and over.

Your big break | Seth Godin (Text at Seth’s Blog)

WHY are objectives difficult to define?

The business objectives model (BOM) is one of the most powerful visual models that we use on our projects. A good BOM not only defines scope, but it also provides a mechanism for prioritizing product features and measuring project success. 

Why are Business Objectives Models SO HARD? | Geraldine Mongold (Text at Seilevel)

HOW can I capture my stakeholders attention?

The carrot and stick will never cut it. Neither will pressing ‘send’ on your communications, and hoping people will read it. Have you ever sent your target audience several (personalised!) emails, then wondered why a small percentage complain that they don’t know about your change? It is not their failure — it’s yours. 

Need stakeholder share of attention span? Choose your tactics! | Allan Owens (Text at Medium)

And, as always, please give feedback on Twitter. Whose piece above stood our for you? What would you like more or less of? Other ideas? Please let me know. Just send a tweet to @joenewbert and put #5W1H at the end so I can find it.

Keep growing.


P.S. What are you waiting for?