How to Manage Project Personalities

To be an excellent project manager you need to have a blend of what the, methodology suggests, experience and character. Through the year I’ve worked with different types of personalities in a single project. Every person on a project has a role, a unique talent, not everyone has the same knowledge or leadership.

But how can a Project Manager (PM) engage people in the project (stakeholder, developer, analyst, tester)… using the “World Peace” phrase?  Sending emails containing a long list of tasks to be performed? Complaining about the output? Pointing people about whose fault it is? Lecturing people working on the project?  These are options that some project managers might use or may consider good options; for me they are all wrong. That does not mean that sometimes they are the only option, but in most cases there is always a right way to do things and one that can benefit every side.

Instead of discussing more about these options and their repercussions, I’m going to address my focus on Personality. Engage people through their personality, learn what they like and dislike, their character and how they see themselves in the project. If we are aware of the kind of person we are working with, then we can prepare, and plan ahead. These are some of my rules in the workplace:

  • How to Manage Software Project PersonalitiesCOMMUNICATEDon’t wait hours to report an issue, if something does not look right talk to the project manager or a co-worker… For me if I don’t have a solution or an idea of what to do in 30 minutes, I know that I have to talk to someone.
  •  Get to KNOW your team, mean it and do it! As long as you know who you are working with everything will run smoothly, this helps emphasizes team work.
  • SEEK the good in people, it could be risky but most time, it is worth it.
  •  Everyone can BE A LEADER in their job, allow them. We are working in a very dynamic environment we need more good leaders.
  •  Make them LAUGH, We work with so much stress that we forget to calm down, a joke or two are not going to kill anyone.

 

Tips on How to Manage Project Personalities

  • RESPECT different opinions…LISTEN. Everyone works differently and sees things in different ways, it is very important for every project manager to remember this.
  •  Less talk more RESULTS. Do more. Don’t promise things you can’t accomplish, keep it low key so at the end, your work speaks for you.
  •  Always speak the TRUTH. Honesty is a great quality to have, don’t waste it.
  •  Anybody in a project can TEACH something new, LEARN IT!

 

Projects are challenging, don’t let personalities became one of them. If you work with a person who is difficult to deal with, the application of these rules can help solve the problem. But if this persists, the best option is to try to understand what might be bothering this person. Working with people that differ in personalities can be hard but you should visualize this as a challenge. Project success is the sum of all the effort of the people involved in the project and that includes the project manager’s effort in working with different personalities between coworkers.

Have additional project management tips? Share it with us in the comments section.

Want to be part of a unique experience? Join us and help us make the difference!

Wovenware is now hiring! If you have experience in business intelligence, and software development let us know. Don’t just sit there and wait for an opportunity to come. Go out and get it, this is your chance. Contact us and let us know why you want to work with us, we are growing quickly and we need people who are passionate, fun and most important, committed to satisfying the needs of our clients. We work in a different way, we treat our clients like partners and help them every step of the way so they can accomplish their goals. Accept the challenge and dare to be different!

Wovenware is now hiring people for our Puerto Rico office in the areas of:

  • Software Development
  • Software Architect
  • Business Intelligence Development
  • Software Engineering

CONTACT US

Electronic Transaction Governance: Implementing Risk Management

This is the fifth and final blog posts of the series of how to implement Electronic Transaction Governance in your custom software interfaces. We will also discuss how Wovenware implements Electronic Transaction Governance in the Wovenware Integrator. The Wovenware Integrator is an adaptable software platform that provides visibility, accountability, and governance to all electronic transaction processes. Please refer to the What is Electronic Transaction Governance blog post for a detailed explanation of the term.

electronic transaction governance risk management

In this blog post we will discuss the area of Risk Management. For the purpose of our discussion risk is anything that can affect the processing outcome of any electronic transaction message. The Risk Management area of Electronic Transaction Governance is the process of identifying and mitigating any risk that might affect our electronic transaction handling processes. Proper Risk Management helps in the identification of unforeseen vulnerabilities and allows for the mitigation of these threats.

An electronic message, regardless of its format ASC X12 EDI, NIEM, HL7, etc., follows a process flow that usually depends on external systems. The availability and accuracy of these external systems is never certain. Thus, we need to carefully identify these possible failure points and mitigate them accordingly.

We start by creating a Risk Register. A Risk Register is a document that includes all the possible risks we can identify in our electronic transaction handling processes. The Risk Register should include:

  1. External System – This is the external system where we have identified vulnerability. (i.e. Relational Database System, FTP Server, etc.)
  2. Vulnerability – This is the risk we have identified. (i.e. Loss of connection to the Relational Database System, etc.)
  3. Risk Classification – All risks must be classified High, Medium, or Low depending on the impact it may cause.
  4. Mitigation Control – How are we going to mitigate the identified risk? (i.e. We will verify the Relational Database System availability before trying to insert a new record. If the system is unavailable we will wait 30 seconds and retry. We will retry 3 times. If after 3 times we are unable to connect we will send an email to the Administrator, log an exception to the System Log, and exit current processing.)

Once we have created the Risk Register, then we need to implement the mitigation controls. Risk identification and handling must be a continuous procedure. It is recommended that the Risk Register be updated at set time intervals or when new risks are identified. Whenever new risks are identified, mitigating controls should be promptly developed.

The Wovenware Integrator mitigates risks through the configuration of its Application Services. Application Services are customizable software processes, based on a Software Pattern developed by Wovenware Engineers, which can execute following a custom defined business workflow. Wovenware has developed a Standard Risk Register that is reexamined and updated with each new electronic transaction message we implement. Some of the items included in our Standard Risk Register are:

  • Connection Loss to External System
  • Unavailable Relational Database System
  • Read File Errors

All the risks identified in the Standard Risk Register are mitigated by default on the Application Services implementation. By developing the mitigation controls on the Application Services implementation we assure that every electronic transaction message handling process in the Wovenware Integrator controls the risk properly.

Implemented Electronic Transaction Governance in your custom software interfaces? Let us know how it went.

Make sure to subscribe to our mailing list (just on the right) to get notified when our blog posts go out.

Why creating a Buyer’s Persona is so important for your business?

In previous posts we have talk about the importance of creating exceptional content for your blog so your potential customers and the existing ones can learn about your company and what you do. But we might say that there’s no content without purpose, you should aim to write useful information for every type of customer; that’s why we need to create Buyer’s Persona.

What?

You might be asking yourself what exactly is a buyer persona, well according to the Buyer Persona Institute “buyer personas are examples of real buyers who influence or make decisions about the products, services or solutions you market. They are a toll that builds confidence in strategies to persuade buyers to choose you rather than your competitor or the status quo.” Meaning what? This personas are examples of each one of us, is just that they are models that represent the wants and needs of every consumer and help companies understand better what people want.

Why?

Is important we have a clear image of what these personas are because if not we can create a non-existent person with misinterpreted needs and wants. Buyer personas are created as tools to help the company build a strategy in order to convince clients by gaining their confidence with relatable examples in a daily basis. You might think building this persona is an easy task but is not, you can’t create the same persona for all your segments. A buyer persona can have specifications about what motivates them, their desires, wants, needs, their behavior and reaction to certain things; buyer’s persona are meant to give an insight to your clients

How?

Creating a buyer persona takes research and a lot of analysis; this would give your company a better idea of who is your target market and audience. You need to collect as much data as possible so you can have all the information that might be relevant for your segment, this will help people associate better. They don’t limit to profiling, buyer personas go way deeper and is better if you create more than one persona. This method will help you understand well your target market and your clients will have more than one person to relate with. Also you can create keywords and content subjects specifically for each of them. Companies that aim to be successful should do more than observe and study their segments; they should conduct interviews and polls to know what are the topics people are interested, any patterns between people so in this way you can start segmenting in a proper way.

When?

There’s no exact time in which you should create a buyer persona, in fact you must have this personas created way before you start your marketing plan so you can incorporate them strategically to the plan. You must define your personas and your segments so your company can be ready for anything.  You never know when you could find new clients or where. It’s important that you include these personas in every marketing strategy you have, so yes you must create them immediately.

 

In conclusion we can say that creating buyer personas is essential for your company because it helps you understand what is that your customer wants. When you create these examples you are giving people insights on your product but from their perspective. Create a specific buyer persona for each one of those segments, try to make more than one persona and remember that at the end of the day you are still competing and your buyer personas are just another strategy to win over your competition. Remember that in order to be successful you must learn all about your clients so you can offer them what they need. Buyer personas are useful tools to understand your customers and establish a long lasting relationship with them.

Electronic Transaction Governance: Implementing Security Management

This is the fourth of a series of five blog posts detailing how to implement Electronic Transaction Governance in your custom software interfaces.  We will also discuss how Wovenware implements Electronic Transaction Governance in the Wovenware Integrator. The Wovenware Integrator is an adaptable software platform that provides visibility, accountability, and governance to all electronic transaction processes. Please refer to the What is Electronic Transaction Governance blog post for a detailed explanation of the term.

Electronic Transaction Governance Security Management

In this blog post we will discuss the area of Security Management. As the name suggests Security Management is the area of Electronic Transaction Governance that deals with security, specifically with information security, transport security, and communication security of the electronic transaction messages. Proper Security Management guarantees the data integrity of the electronic transaction message.

An electronic message, regardless of its format ASC X12 EDI, NIEM, HL7, etc., follows a process flow. It is important that all aspects of the process flow and electronic message be secure as to only allow vetted individuals access to the information.

The process flows should be secured so that only individuals with the appropriate credentials have access to the message as it navigates through the business process flow. This means that the transaction staging points need to be secured. Staging points are the locations where the electronic message is stored as it moves through its business process flow. These locations could be the File System, FTP Server, SFTP Server, Database, Message Queue, etc. In order to implement proper Electronic Transaction Governance you must secure access to these locations and make sure only appropriate resources have access to these areas. Additionally, it is a best practice to log all access to these areas.The electronic message should be secured separately of the process flow security. The easiest way to implement electronic message security is to encrypt the message as it travels through the business process flow and only decrypt the electronic message once it is ready to be processed.

The Wovenware Integrator secures the electronic transaction message through the configuration of its Application Services implementation and Cerberus, Wovenware’s Security Application. Application Services are customizable software processes, based on a Software Pattern developed by Wovenware Engineers, which can execute following a custom defined business workflow. An Application Service can be configured to encrypt and decrypt the electronic messages as needed. Thus for example, an electronic message can be encrypted before it is communicated or stored into a physical location.

Cerberus allows for the secure management of all components of the Wovenware Integrator. Additionally, it provides single sign on capability to help reduce end user confusion over multiple logins across different applications. Through Cerberus, the different staging points of the electronic transaction message are secured and access is logged.

In our next and final post we will discuss how to implement the Risk Management area of Electronic Transaction Governance.

Electronic Transaction Governance: Implementing Audit Trails

This is the third of a series of five blog posts detailing how to implement Electronic Transaction Governance in your custom software interfaces.  We will also discuss how Wovenware implements Electronic Transaction Governance in the Wovenware Integrator. The Wovenware Integrator is an adaptable software platform that provides visibility, accountability, and governance to all electronic transaction processes. Please refer to the What is Electronic Transaction Governance blog post for a detailed explanation of the term.

Electronic Transaction Governance: Audit Trails

In this blog post we will discuss the area of Audit Trails. Audit Trails are data logs, information breadcrumbs, which allow process flows (in our context software process flows) to be tracked trough their lifecycle. The importance of audit trails is that they allow for accountability and reporting of these process flows. Specifically for software process flows they are also excellent debugging tools.

Audit Trails is the area of Electronic Transaction Governance that require proper log messages are recorded for all electronic transaction messages handled by the processing software.

An electronic message, regardless of its format ASC X12 EDI, NIEM, HL7, etc., follows a process flow. That is, the electronic transaction message is processed following a series of predetermined steps. An example of these steps could be:

Electronic Message Process Flow

To implement proper Electronic Transaction Governance, at least, one Audit Trail message should be logged for each step of the process flow. Using the example above , means we would need to log an audit message when the message is received, when it is decrypted, when its standard compliance is verified, when its data quality is tested, and finally when the electronic message is inserted into the core system. It is recommended that multiple audit messages be logged for each process flow. This way the message flow could be more thoroughly monitored.

The audit trail log must include all the necessary information to recreate the electronic message. Remember these audit logs will be your monitoring, accountability and reporting data. If log space is limited then at least all the critical information should be logged. Finally, audit trails have invaluable process flow information, as such store them in a secure environment for as long as possible.

The Wovenware Integrator logs audit trails through the configuration of its Application Services implementation and custom calls to the Wovenware Audit Log API. Application Services are customizable software processes, based on a Software Pattern developed by Wovenware Engineers, which can execute following a custom defined business workflow. Inside the implementation of an Application Service defined task, audit messages are automatically logged thorough the process flow. The audit messages are logged to the Wovenware Integrator Audit Log Database Tables. Additional audit messages can be logged by adding custom calls to the Wovenware Audit Log API.

In our next post we will discuss how to implement the Security Management area of Electronic Transaction Governance.

Nearshore Software Development