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Entries Tagged as 'Communication'

We Like Agile, Until We Don’t

January 8th, 2018 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips In Agile Development, we are supposed to talk to one another each day. Sometimes, however, we just didn’t sign up for this talking stuff. In Agile Development, we are supposed to talk to other persons. We are supposed to sit next to other persons and work with them. All of us are […]

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Tags: Agility · Communication · Culture · Programming

Interpersonal Communication for Scientists and Engineers

December 28th, 2017 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips The stereotype of the scientist and engineer is someone who would rather be with technical things than people. Here are a few tips. As an engineer, this holds for scientists as well, there is one fundamental question we must always be prepared to answer (two words): what’cha doin? The answer does not […]

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Tags: Communication

I’m not Testing, Just Noticing

December 21st, 2017 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips Sometimes I fill the role of the “just notice-er.” Perhaps that should be an official title in systems development. I was preparing a demonstration of software we developed in house. Something wasn’t happening as I expected. I asked a couple of the programmers to look over my shoulder. “Look at this,” I […]

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Tags: Communication · Conversation · Notice · Systems · Testing

I Don’t Want to Hurt Your Feelings, but…

December 14th, 2017 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips Drop the “but.” It erases all previous words. Use a period instead. I said: I don’t want to hurt you feelings, but, we need to change how we do things here. He heard: we, actually YOU, need to change how we do things here. Funny how the word “but” works in conversation. […]

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Tags: Communication · Conversation · Word

Stop Listening, Don’t Wonder

December 4th, 2017 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips I write this one with some hesitancy as there is always something to be learned by continually listening. Sometimes, however, listen for meta messages, not the message as the messenger is clearly confused. Sometimes the best thing to do is stop listening—for now. And also, don’t waste time and energy wondering about […]

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Tags: Communication

Let’s Draw a Picture

November 6th, 2017 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips An old technique that always surfaces confusion and moves us towards clarity. Me: Let’s draw a picture of this so I can understand it better. Person A: We don’t need to waste time with that. We all know what it is. …a little while later… Person A: See, we set it up […]

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Tags: Analysis · Communication · Learning

An Interaction Exercise

November 2nd, 2017 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips Here is a simple exercise you can use with your team to learn something about how well you work together. Step 1: Get a deck of playing cards. Step 2: Hand every person on your team some cards. Hand some person a couple of cards and hand some persons a dozen cards. […]

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Tags: Communication · Consulting · Group · Management · Meetings

Thank You Fake News and Social Media, We Needed a New Excuse

October 26th, 2017 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips Why disdain fake news and social media? Let’s embrace it for what it gives us—a new excuse. I recently learned that fake news on social media controls the world. All money flows in a direction it flows because it is directed by fake news. All elections are won by fake news purveyors. […]

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Tags: Communication · Excuses

Say it Aloud First (in a safe place)

October 16th, 2017 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips Advice on preparing to bring a concept to others. I have a great idea! I have a informed observation! I have something that others should hear or read! It’s obviously worthwhile. What should I do first? Say it aloud (in a safe place). There is something about saying the words aloud that […]

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Tags: Communication · Ideas · Learning

Jerry Pournelle

September 18th, 2017 · No Comments

by Dwayne Phillips Someone who had a big influence on my life has passed away. “The Mote in God’s Eye.” Star Wars was in theaters, and everyone was enthralled. The science fiction community tried to fit in with Luke, Han, and the rest, often in vain. Every science fiction commentator had their own list of, […]

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Tags: Communication · Computing · Systems · Teaching · Writing