Project Management (PM)

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Learn more about Metal Toad's approach to Project Management - Agile or otherwise we've learned a lot over the years and we are more than happy to share.  Enjoy!

  • SAFe POPM logo is on the left with a dark blue background. CSPO logo is on the right with an orange background. Verbiage that says "vs." is in the middle.

    SAFe POPM vs. CSPO - Which Product Owner Certification is The Best?

    What’s a Product Owner? A product owner (PO) plays a key role in many projects. A simple definition of a PO is a person who represents the customer’s interests on the team.

  • CC. "Man on ship's gangplank," by James Crookall

    The Agile PM Onboard

    Hiring and starting a new job - two sides of the same coin, yet with similar risks and rewards. Can a new employee onboard a new job with a minimum of wasted time, effort, and stress? Can the new employee grow in knowledge, confidence, and reputation in the process?

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    To PMP or Not to PMP?

    I'm often asked for career path advice by up-and-coming professionals in the project management space.

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    Want to get your product to market faster? Hire a Scrum Master.

    In the practice of Agile Project Management, it has long been assumed that a Scrum Master (also referred to at Metal Toad as Agile Project Manager) is an integral member of any successful Scrum team.

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    The Art of Sprinting: It’s Not Just for Software Development

    As a sequel to the article I wrote last month about the process and technology improvements I helped design/build firm Design Platform

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    Maximizing the Value of a Small Team by Maturing Processes and Technology

    One of the things that I do is help companies and business people implement a people, process, and technology golden triangle so that there is a solid foundation for growth, maturation and scalability in their organization.

  • ScrumMaster Rules - No Interruptions

    The Value of a ScrumMaster

    I went to ScrumMaster training a few weeks into my first job in an Agile project management environment. I was brand new to the methodology, and throughout the training and after, I didn't really understand the value of the ScrumMaster. “What an easy gig,” I thought.

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    How to Hack It: 5 Tech Tips to Improve Your Productivity

    I have always been interested in the way things work. As an Agile Project Manager at Metal Toad, I get to take my curiosity one step further and explore not just how things work, but the ways to make them work faster and more efficient as well.


    How RFP Software Helps Metal Toad Be More Effective

    Recently I had the pleasure of being interviewed by one of our vendor partners, RFPIO, to chat about RFP response. Since using RFPIO, my team has enjoyed many benefits that have streamlined our approach to RFPs and contracts while greatly improving productivity.

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    Digital Project Management Apprenticeships

    Metal Toad has the deep belief that apprenticeships in tech can hone new skills introduced in code school and provide real world experiences that can springboard people to a new career.

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    Building Departments from Scratch

    Metal Toad, I would like to congratulate you for one year of project management consistency, one year without turnover in the project management department. This is a cause for celebration! Raise your glass filled with the libation of your choice and high-five your neighbor.

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    A Case for Agency Project Managers to Get Their PMP

    Consider your credentials Depending on your industry, you may or may not be aware of the Project Management Institute (PMI) or their Project Management Professional (PMP) credential.

  • Evolving With Our Clients: The Great Scrumban Experiment

    Evolving With Our Clients: The Great Scrumban Experiment

      Identifying the need for change In early 2016, Metal Toad fully adopted Agile Scrum methodology. We'd been dabbling in it for a while, coopting some of the ceremonies but lacking any real consistency or a well-defined process.

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    Notes: An Agile Project Manager’s Critical Asset

    The Livesaving Nature of Notes The software industry’s shift to Agile project management methodologies has many of us happily burying the waterfall project artifacts – the 13 required management plans, comprehensive work breakdown structure (

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    The Softer Side of Scrum

    Many of the folks reading this blog are already familiar with Agile Software Development (a.k.a. Agile). Maybe your organization already uses Agile methodology, or maybe you’re considering adopting one of its many variations into your company’s workflow.

  • The Story of Hayli Hay, Our Director of Project Management

    Process Maps, Timelines, & Clients

    As Metal Toad’s Director of Project Management, Hayli Hay’s got her hands full.

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    Does Lean Six Sigma Work at a Digital Tech Agency?

    Using Lean and Six Sigma methodology in a manufacturing environment is practically required. The healthcare industry is a big fan.

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    Project Manager Hobbies: Managing Projects

    This year marked my 7th consecutive trip to Park City, Utah to volunteer at the Sundance Film Festival. In past many years, I’ve been lucky enough to balance 10 days of volunteerism and my “real life” job(s) in tandem.

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    On Manual Process & Reporting

    Data automation has been popular business buzzword jargon as of late, and to some extent, rightfully so! It saves time, creates seamless integration between applications, and can provide always-on, real-time information for making appropriate decisions.

  • catching up after the conference

    ToadCast 027 - DPM Summit Day 1 Live Recap

    Toad project managers in Austin! For Toadcast 27, we're coming to you directly from our hotel room during the interlude between day one and two of the 2014 Digital PM Summit.

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    Agile Versus Waterfall, Once and For All

    As we race towards the date of my presentation at this October's Digital PM Summit, I'm working to crank out the remaining posts in my series that started after I first presented on the topic of growth at Drupalcon Austin. This seventh post touches on one of the biggest debates of the last decade

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    Scaling Projects and Scaling the Organization

    This post is the second in a series following the session I presented at Drupalcon Austin, entitled "Oh look, we're growing!" In this post, I want to take a

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    A Formula for Healthy Project Size Compared to Organization Size

    This post is the first in a series following the session I presented at Drupalcon Austin recently, entitled "Oh look, we're growing!" The session as a whole

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    Sound "Bytes" From The Digital PM Summit

    The Digital PM Summit took place earlier this week in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

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    My Takeaways on the Digital Project Management Summit in Philadelphia.

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    Metal Toad at the Digital PM Summit

    Metal Toad is excited to be attending the first-of-its-kind Digital PM Summit coming up during the middle of October in Philadelphia!

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    The Successful Digital PM, Part 5C: Retention

    The final post in my Successful Digital PM series is also both the trickiest for me to write and the one that has been the most eye opening to me as I've written it. Retention of all employees is critical to keeping an organization running like a well-oiled machine, and given the integrated role of a PM across projects, this is doubly true. Metal Toad hasn't always gotten it right, but we've learned a lot along the way. Below are some things I've learned and strategies we employ at Metal Toad to achieve success.

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    The Successful Digital PM, Part 5B: Professional Development

    Following parts 1-4 on what makes for a great digital PM, part 5A covered finding and hiring those great project managers. Part 5B gets into some strategies that we employ for professional development to make sure our project managers are on-boarded with proper training and have the opportunity to grow professionally on a continuing basis.

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    Mastering The Metal Toad Project Life Cycle

    We're in the middle of interviews for our open project manager position and we've been talking to a lot of great candidates, all with diverse project process backgrounds at various companies.

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    Project Management Chronicles: Be the Expo

    Imagine this scenario at your favorite popular and busy eatery:

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    Top 5 Skills to be a Good Project Manager

    Project Management in an agency is a difficult role to prepare for. You need to balance keeping customers happy while making sure that you aren't overpraising, potentially compromising the budget and timeline of a project.

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