About the Book
This book discusses many popular improvement approaches including the CMMI, Lean Six Sigma, and Agile Retrospectives; it highlights fifteen (15) fundamentals common to all successful improvement efforts where sustainable high value performance improvements are achieved; and it shares a vision (and an actual example that holds promise) of a simple “thinking framework” that can help counter the patterns that may be holding you and your organization back from the sustainable high performance you seek.
Paul also shares real examples from his consulting experiences, a personal performance improvement experience, and stories from high performing athletes and musicians to help you think about performance improvement outside-the-box.
Praise for 15 Fundamentals...
“…this book is about far more than CMMI…I believe that it's critical that we listen to, think about, and then act on the criticisms that Paul shares with us…. Should you read this book? If you are interested in software process improvement, if you are responsible for an agile transformation effort, or if you are an IT professional who wants to get better at what they do, then I also think the answer is a resounding yes. In short, Paul has written another great one.”
Scott Ambler, Co-Author of Disciplined Agile Delivery: A Practitioner's Guide to Agile Software Delivery in the Enterprise
"Paul has a refreshingly different approach to process improvement. It is based on sound theory, personal observations over a long career, and his participation in the groundbreaking SEMAT project. This book is a perfect counterpoint to the traditional improvement methods so often applied with CMMI, Six Sigma, and other improvement approaches. Read it and then wonder how you ever survived those other approaches."
Dr. Richard Turner, Co-Author of CMMI Survival Guide: Just Enough Process Improvement
"Many efforts have been made to capture the enormous breadth and depth of knowledge and practices necessary to improve organizational performance. Until now, these efforts have either woefully lacked for substance or completeness. More likely, other efforts simply gave up on the fantasy of being complete and settled for a focus on a tiny subset of what's needed to be said. Through masterful architecting of ideas, Paul's 15 Fundamentals for Higher Performance in Software Development offers a readily digestible framework to provide both substance and completeness to a very large, complex and important subjects."
Hillel Glazer, Author, High Performance Operations, CMMI High Maturity Lead Appraiser
"Paul has done a great job looking at a wide spectrum of prevalent software methods, without a bias for or against any, and come up with a few practical tips for a sustained performance improvement. If you are short of time or don't know where to start the book, jump to the 15 fundamentals. They are worth their weight in gold."
Prabhakar R. Karve, Director of Engineering, Impetus
"I very much like the 'out of the box' approach. The book exemplifies high maturity thinking in a simple way."
Winifred Menezes, CMMI High Maturity Lead Appraiser
"I am one of those people that Paul refers to in the introduction to this book who are turned off and have tuned out when it comes to the multitude of process and performance improvement approaches along with their related hype and buzzwords. So the first thing that hit me when Paul asked me to review this book was 'oh no! not another buzzword and tool!' But in going through it, it really hung together. This actually struck home with me because this Essence framework introduces a lot more context with regard to problem solving. And again this upset me because I wanted to scream at someone for introducing another tool and I couldn't."
John Troy, Program Manager Rockwell-Collins
"This book gave me insight into other ways to improve and lay the foundation for CMMI Level 4 and 5; a foundation to last and expand."
Dr. Michael Oakes, Process Improvement Lead, Alion Science and Technology, A CMMI Development and Services Level 3 Organization
"Congratulations on producing a really valuable piece of work. Clearly the product of many years' worth of serious application. The book reveals the essence of improving software development performance by teaching us to take ownership for improvement and focusing on patterns to address repeating, specific, weaknesses."
Barry Myburgh, Johannesburg Centre for Software Engineering(JCSE),School of Electrical and Information Engineering, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa
"We have spent about 100 years applying scientific management. Until now we just do our job without knowing why we are doing it. We know what we are doing when we pay attention but not when we don't pay attention and it is in those times that our efforts come undone. This is the thrust of a lot of this book."
Dr. Tom McBride, University of Technology, Sydney, Australia
"The material addresses how to apply principles and practices to control the Complex Adaptive System that we call our organization. SEMAT provides structure to control development and sufficient freedom to leverage the creativity from within the organization, to meet your objectives. If individuals take the time to "think" about how to improve and their team understands "why" they are performing an activity; the leader and the team should be able to adopt and extend the SEMAT framework to address their desired 'productivity' performance goals."
Bob Epps, Lockheed Martin Corporate Engineering and Technology
"If you are a software practitioner and serious golfer (or athlete), and are looking for advice on how to continuously improve your professional and personal performances, this book is for you. It encompasses 40 years of Paul's experience on how to practice to get to the next level of excellence, both at work and on the green."
Dr. Cecile Peraire, Carnegie Mellon University, Silicon Valley Campus
About the Author
Paul E. McMahon (firstname.lastname@example.org), Principal, PEM Systems (www.pemsystems.com) has been an independent consultant since 1997 helping organizations increase agility and process maturity. He has taught software engineering at Binghamton University, conducted workshops on engineering processes and management and has published more than 45 articles and multiple books including "Integrating CMMI and Agile Development: Case Studies and Proven Techniques for Faster Performance Improvement." Paul is a co-author of "The Essence of Software Engineering: Applying the SEMAT Kernel." Paul is a Certified Scrum Master and a Certified Lean Six Sigma Black Belt. His insights reflect 24 years of experience working for companies such as Link Simulation and Lockheed Martin, and 17 years of consulting/coaching experience. Paul has been a leader in the SEMAT initiative since its initial meeting in Zurich in 2010.