Monthly Archives: February 2012

Why I’m coming to SEPG 2012 (again) this year – Reason #3

The #3 Reason to Attend SEPGNA: To Build Stronger Relationships with Key SEI Leaders
CMMI Appraiser, CMMI Consulting, CMMI Training, CMMI Appraisal, CMMI Assessor, CMMI Consultant

Howdy, Partners – Whoopee ti yi yo, git along little dogies!  It’s time once again for my Top Ten reasons to go to the SEPG North America rodeo in Albuquerque on March 12-15.  If you read my Reason #10, Reason #9, Reason #8, Reason #7, Reason #6, Reason #5 and Reason #4, you know that SEPG North America is the place to be for anyone who is passionate about process improvement and the CMMI.

So let’s load up the chuck-wagon and get on with my list of Top 10 Reasons to attend SEPG North America 2012.

Drum roll, please!  Reason #3 is …

To build stronger relationships with key SEI leaders.

Introducing yourself to your hosts is not only the polite thing to do, it is one of the best reasons for going to the SEPGNA.  Especially this year, when several key SEI leaders will be in attendance.

Since I’m limited to 300-500 words, I can’t talk about ALL of the great folks over at the SEI, so today I’d like to call attention to four influential people that you’ll want to be sure to meet at the Conference.  They are:

  1. Dr. Paul D. Nielsen.  Paul is Director and Chief Executive Officer of the SEI. As you may know, part of Paul’s role is to visit with key customers to help keep the SEI aligned with the needs of leading companies and organizations, which is good for the Partners as well.  Talk to Paul about whether it makes sense for him to interact with your (or your client’s) management team.
  2. Anita Carleton.  Anita is the Director of the Software Engineering Process Management (SEPM) Program at the SEI – and one awesome lady as well! Meeting Anita will give you an opportunity to learn about her vision for the  program, and give you a chance to share your ideas as well.   Like Paul, Anita travels to companies and organizations to interact with their management and help improve alignment.  Both you and your customers will benefit from meeting Anita.
  3. Rawdon (“Rusty”) Young.  Rusty is another influential leader in a new role.  As CMMI Program Manager (acting), Rusty is the person to meet if you would like to hear about the future of the CMMI, if you have some ideas for changes (don’t forget to fill out a change request!), or about anything else regarding the CMMI that you want to talk about.  He’s your man!
  4. Lisa Masciantonio.  Lisa is head of the SEI Partner Network and is the main point of contact for all of the SEI Partners.  If you have any Partner issues, Lisa is the one to go to.  In fact, go to Lisa even if you don’t have any issues!  She’s aweeeeeeesome!

As key representatives of the SEI at the SEPGNA Conference, Paul, Anita, Rusty, and Lisa are a big part of the face of a product line that is the best process model in the industry.  It’s up to us, as Partners, to get to know them, so that we can work more closely with them on reinforcing the brand.  SEPGNA is the perfect place to do that.  Be sure to introduce your customers to these fine individuals.

While I don’t have space to write about ALL of the great people at the SEI, don’t forget to connect with Eileen Forrester, Will Hays, Mike Konrad, and many others.

If you haven’t already signed up, be sure to register – and we’ll see you in Albuquerque!

Need more reasons to go?  Check back soon for Reason #2.

Jeff Dalton is President of Broadsword Solutions Corporation and the incoming Chairman of the SEI’s Partner Advisory Board.  He is a SCAMPI Lead Appraiser whose blog can be read at www.asktheCMMIAppraiser.com.  He can be reached at appraiser@broadswordsolutions.com

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Experience a Passion for Process in Madrid this June: Register Now & Save Up to $400

As evidenced by the significant response to the SEPG Europe 2012 call for participation, it’s easy to see that there is a lot of ¡Passion for Process! in the global software engineering community.

The SEPG Europe 2012 technical program is currently being assembled, but the keynote speakers have been announced. These five process improvement thought-leaders will share their passion and expert insights from the fields of academia, government, and industry.

If you want to learn, share, and network with passionate professionals from around the world, register for SEPG Europe 2012 today. The first 75 registrants will save up to $400 off standard registration rates. Act soon, because the discount expires on 19 March 2012, or when 75 delegates have registered–whichever comes first.

Delegates may also book hotel accommodations at the NH Eurobuilding Hotel Madrid, which is also the site of SEPG Europe 2012 conference activities.

Get to Know the Keynote Speakers

Jan Bosch is a Professor of Software Engineering and co-director of the Software Research Center at Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg, Sweden. He has published, advised on, and implemented specific techniques around software architecture, software variability management, the link to business strategy, organizational models, assessment frameworks, adoption frameworks, and quality attributes. He is the author of the book Design and Use of Software Architectures: Adopting and Evolving a Product Line Approach, numerous research articles, and is the editor for Science of Computer Programming.

Angel Jordan founded the Software Engineering Institute in 1984 while provost of Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) and served twice as director. In 1966, he contributed to the formation of the first department of Computer Science in the United States at CMU. He was also a founder of the CMU Robotics Institute. Jordan is Doctor Honoris Causa from three universities in Spain, honorific professor of three universities in China, a member of the National Academy of Engineering in the U.S.; Miembro Correspondiente of the Real Academia de Ingeniería in Spain, fellow of the Institute of Electronics and Electrical Engineers (IEEE) and of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). He is now University Professor Emeritus and Provost Emeritus at CMU.

Anita Carleton is the Director of the Software Engineering Process Management (SEPM) program at the Software Engineering Institute, where she led development of the Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI) and the Team Software Process (TSP). In addition to launching the Software Measurement initiative at the SEI and managing the Software Process Measurement project until 1995, she has co-authored the book Measuring the Software Process: Statistical Process Control for Software Process Improvement, chaired the Software Engineering Process Group Asia-Pacific Conference and the Team Software Process Symposium, and served as guest editor for Crosstalk: Journal of Defense Software Engineering and The Journal of Systems and Software.

Andrew Nolan joined Rolls-Royce in 1989 and is now the chief of Software Improvement, where he provides support across the business as well as for partner companies, customers, and suppliers. Nolan has spent more than 23 years in software development and project management and spent 12 of those years in process improvement. His key specialty is using cost models to optimize projects and improve planning and business decisions. Nolan is a certified Six Sigma Black Belt, which he uses to improve processes within Rolls-Royce. He is a fellow of the British Computer Society and a chartered engineer and chartered IT professional.

Mario Piattini is the founder of IT companies Cronos Ibérica, S.A., Kybele Consulting, S.L., and Alarcos Quality Center, S.L. He is also a professor at the University of Castilla-La Mancha (UCLM) and director of the Information Systems and Technologies Institute and the UCLM-Indra Joint Software Research and Development Center. Piattini holds MSc. and Ph.D. degrees in Computer Science from Madrid Technical University. His professional certifications include Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA), Certified Information Security Manager (CISM), Certified in the Governance of Enterprise IT (CGEIT), and Certified in Risk and Information Systems Control (CRISC) by ISACA, and Certified Software Quality Engineer (CSQE) by ASQ.

Why I’m coming to SEPG (again) this year – Reason #4

The #4 Reason to Attend SEPGNA: To Build Stronger Relationships with Your Customers

Jeff Dalton, CMMI Lead Appraiser, CMMI Consultant, CMMI Instructor
Howdy, Partners – by the sun slanting in the Western sky, I see it’s almost time for the SEPG North America rodeo on March 12-15 in Albuquerque.  That means I better put a hitch in my giddy-up and get on with my Top 10 reasons to be there.  (Here’s Reason #10, Reason #9, Reason #8, Reason #7, Reason #6 and Reason #5.)  Ready?

Then let’s get on with my list of Top 10 Reasons to attend SEPG North America 2012.

Drum roll, please!  Reason #4 is …

To build stronger relationships with your customers.

Building relationships with the customer is important in any industry.  But it’s absolutely critical in the context of the CMMI, where we are passionate about organizational process and performance improvement, and helping companies be as great as they can be.

So let me ask you this: will you take the opportunity to build stronger relationships with your customers by bringing them to SEPGNA 2012?

As part of my commitment to the CMMI, I am bringing six of my customers to the conference this year.  Last year I brought five.  Here’s why I think it’s a good thing to do:

SEPGNA allows you to spend quality time with your customers.  So often in our day-to-day work, we are on-site to solve problems.  There are subgroups to be evaluated and artifacts to be collected.  But down in Albuquerque, life moves at a slower pace.  You’ll be able to connect with your customers on a personal level.  You’ll share meals together, attend sessions together, and perhaps take in a round of golf together.

SEPGNA allows you to guide your customers through the learning process.  With you by their side, customers can grasp the real meaning of the CMMI, and the long-term value the model provides.  And when questions come up, you’ll be right there to answer with real-live examples from their current projects.

SEPGNA allows you to introduce your customers to both the SEI and other adopters of the CMMI.  For me, this is one of the most rewarding experiences at the SEPGNA.  I love to see new friendships form when I introduce my customers to the smart folks from the SEI, as well as to the broader community of people with the same problems they’ve been facing.

In my opinion, all of us – both the SEI and its Partners – should strive to be people-integrators.  That means, part of our job is to integrate the customers with each other, so that they can have a support system of their own.

And you know what?  I’ve never met a customer who wasn’t excited about going.

So let’s be generous and share some knowledge.  I urge each of you to invite at least one customer to come.  Have them register – and we’ll see you in Albuquerque!

Need more reasons to go?  Check back soon for Reason #3.

Jeff Dalton is President of Broadsword Solutions Corporation and the incoming Chairman of the SEI’s Partner Advisory Board.  He is a SCAMPI Lead Appraiser whose blog can be read at www.asktheCMMIAppraiser.com.  He can be reached at appraiser@broadswordsolutions.com.

Why I’m coming to SEPG 2012 this year – Reason #5

The #5 Reason to Attend SEPGNA: It’s where learning begins.

Jeff Dalton CMMI Appraiser CMMI Consultant
Howdy, Partners – we’re just two hoots and a holler away from the world’s greatest CMMI round-up, SEPG North America, on March 12-15 in Albuquerque, and by gum, it’s time to share another one of my rootin-tootin Top 10 Reasons to be there.  I reckon you don’t need much more convincin’ after Reason #10, Reason #9, Reason #8, Reason #7 and Reason #6.  But there’s pleasure in the sharin’ … ‘specially once I drop this here phony New Mexico cowpoke accent.

So let’s get on with my list of Top 10 Reasons to attend SEPG North America 2012.

Drum roll, please!  Reason #5 is …

It’s where learning begins.

I’ve found that most of us share the burning desire for lifelong learning.  That’s why we read books, articles, and blogs.  It’s why we listen to speakers and take professional development classes.  And most importantly, it’s why we come together on a regular basis: to learn.

By now you probably know that one of the places where learning begins in our industry is at the SEPG Conference.  Learning experiences range from formal presentations, day-long tutorials, and half-day workshops to informal conversations and social interactions.  Here, you get to rub elbows with some of the finest professionals in the engineering process improvement and CMMI universe.  We all share strategies and tactics, tips and techniques, best practices to adopt, and pitfalls to avoid.  And we’ll have the truly unforgettable experience of building on our skills and knowledge, together.

Many of you, like me, will be coming back to the SEPGNA Conference.  (This is actually my umpteenth trip!)  I can honestly say that I learn something new every time I go.

Personally, what I find most valuable to learn about are actual client experiences.  I gravitate toward presentations that delve deeply into the topic, and like to learn the most from people’s actual experiences.

For example, at past SEPG conferences, I’ve learned about new ways that appraisals are conducted to be more agile and efficient.  I’ve learned new techniques for how to interact with sponsors.  I’ve attended great presentations that offered lessons learned from dealing with executives.  I’ve learned the 10 things you shouldn’t do at a CMMI appraisal.  And I’ve had fun too – with entertaining and interesting speakers like Pat O’Toole, Hillel Glazer, Bill Smith, Heather Oppenheimer, Judah Mogilensky, David Anderson, Mike Konrad, and many more.

We can expect even more at this year’s SEPGNA.  On the docket are dozens of excellent speakers on many timely and relevant topics.  So whatever you choose to attend, you’ll have fun, learn a lot, and leave Albuquerque smarter about process improvement, CMMI, and many other topics than before you came.

If you haven’t already signed up, be sure to register – and we’ll see you in Albuquerque!

Need more reasons to go?  Check back soon for Reason #4.

Jeff Dalton is President of Broadsword Solutions Corporation and the incoming Chairman of the SEI’s Partner Advisory Board.  He is a SCAMPI Lead Appraiser whose blog can be read at www.asktheCMMIAppraiser.com.  He can be reached at appraiser@broadswordsolutions.com.

Why I’m coming to SEPG 2012 – Reason #6

The #6 Reason to Attend SEPGNA: There’s gold in them thar hills

Jeff Dalton, SCAMPI Lead Appraiser, CMMI Consulting, CMMI Instructor, CMMI Training, CMMI Assessor and President of Broadsword
Howdy, Partners – hope you got your spurs on, because I’ve got another one of my Top 10 Reasons for giddy-uppin’ down to the SEPG North America rodeo on March 12-15 in Albuquerque.  I know some of y’all had your fill with Reason #10, Reason #9, Reason #8 and Reason #7.  But if you’re looking for even more reasons to come … as John Wayne used to say, “Young fella, I’ll accommodate ya” … just as soon as I drop my phony cowpoke accent.

Let’s get on with my list of Top 10 Reasons to attend SEPG North America 2012.

Drum roll, please!  Reason #6 is …

There’s gold in them thar hills.

Yes, my friends, gold, as in golden opportunities.  Every year, the SEPG North America conference attracts engineering and software professionals from some of the finest organizations in our country, and beyond.  That makes the conference an outstanding to network and develop new business relationships.

As you may know, the conference draws everyone from CMMI Lead Appraisers to CMMI program sponsors to folks who are just learning how to spell “CMMI.”  They all come together out of a common interest in process, performance, and organizational improvement.  Some are actively looking for a potential SEI Partner.  And some have already gotten attached to one.  But I’ve found that there is plenty of opportunity for sponsors to meet Partners, and Partners to meet sponsors during the many technical presentation and networking events.

True story: Last year, in Portland, I gave a presentation called “The Agile SCAMPI: Taming the Savage Beast.”  There was a decent crowd (ok, some came just for the hats I was tossing out for free) and I hope they received some good information about making Appraisals simpler and more Agile.

One company in the audience was in the process of tackling a large-scale, multi-location process improvement initiative.  They needed help with planning, training, and conducting a multi-site SCAMPI Appraisal.  They had already zeroed in on a small set of Partners to choose from but after my speech they added me to the list.  Just like that!  I ultimately started working with them and it was a win for everyone involved.

What lesson did I learn from this?  Come for the great technical sessions, but stay for the networking.  You never know when you’re shaking hands with your next big client – or finding your next Partner.

One last thing.  Don’t forget to register by February 10, 2012.  You’ll save up to $300 off regular, full-conference registration rates.

Need more reasons to go?  Check back soon for Reason #5.

Jeff Dalton is President of Broadsword Solutions Corporation and the incoming Chairman of the SEI’s Partner Advisory Board.  He is a SCAMPI Lead Appraiser whose blog can be read at www.asktheCMMIAppraiser.com.  He can be reached at appraiser@broadswordsolutions.com.

Why I’m coming to SEPGNA this year – Reason #7

The #7 Reason to Attend SEPGNA: Albuquerque is a treasure of the Southwest

By Jeff Dalton

Howdy, Partners!  As anybody with horse sense knows, I’m a straight-shooter (maybe a little too straight I’ve been told).  There ain’t no ballyhoo to my Top 10 Reasons for moseying down to the SEPG North America rodeo on March 12-15 in Albuquerque (for proof, you can skedaddle over to Reason #10, Reason #9 and Reason #8).  Now, before y’all start raising Cain about my phony cowpoke accent, allow me to drop it like a hot tater, and give you Reason #7.

There, I dropped it.  Just in time, too.  My neighbors here in Michigan were starting to look at me funny.

So, without further delay, let’s get on with my list of Top 10 Reasons to attend SEPG North America 2012.

Drum roll, please!  Reason #7 is …

Albuquerque is a treasure of the American Southwest.

As you may know, every year a different, unique location plays host to the SEPG North America conference.

This year, the 24th annual SEPG North America conference is in Albuquerque, New Mexico.  You’ll keep busy with 100 technical sessions, designed to equip you with implementable solutions that can help you Reach New Levels of Excellence and achieve a positive return on your investment from process improvement.  But you’ll have some free time, too, and may want to do some exploring.

Here are some of the many unforgettable experiences awaiting you in Albuquerque:

  • Immerse yourself in rich Southwestern culture and heritage
  • Soak in the blue skies and sun that shines 310 days a year
  • Breathe in the high desert air scented with sage and piñon
  • Shop for authentic Native American jewelry
  • Try hot air ballooning
  • Visit living history museums
  • Enjoy Albuquerque events and festivals
  • Sample local cuisines
  • Hit the golf courses and spas
  • Relax by the pool with the CMMI book (no napping!)

… and much more.  So come on down for the great technical sessions, powerful networking opportunities, and that life-giving sunshine.  Oh, and don’t forget to register by February 10, 2012.  You’ll save up to $300 off regular, full-conference registration rates.

Need more reasons to go?  Check back soon for Reason #6.

Jeff Dalton is President of Broadsword Solutions Corporation and the incoming Chairman of the SEI’s Partner Advisory Board.  He is a SCAMPI Lead Appraiser whose blog can be read at www.asktheCMMIAppraiser.com.  He can be reached at appraiser@broadswordsolutions.com.

Why I’m coming to SEPG 2012 – Reason #8

The #8 Reason to Attend SEPGNA: To Have Meaningful Conversations

Howdy, Partners!  Albuquerque Jeff here.  I know some bushwhackers who wouldn’t know a blog post from a hitchn’ post, so you must be purdy smart to be reading my Top Ten Reasons for coming out west to the SEPG North America rodeo on March 12-15 in Albuquerque.  (Case you missed ‘em, you can point your six-shooter and click on Reason #10 and Reason #9.)  Now I’ll just drop my phony cowpoke accent, and get straight to Reason #8.

You know, if I keep this up, I might forget how to talk in plain English!  So, with no more nonsense, allow me to continue my list of Top 10 Reasons to attend SEPG North America 2012.

Drum roll, please!  Reason #8 is …

It’s a great place to have meaningful conversations.

Every year, the SEPG North America conference draws a wide variety of engineering and software professionals, who come from a vast array of disciplines.  Some want more information on multi-model approaches.  Some are interested in practical process improvement, while others get passionate about high maturity.  And don’t get me started on agile and CMMI!

This year, with the theme Reaching New Levels of Excellence, the 24th annual SEPG North America conference will give Partners and companies even more to talk about.  We’ll discuss both principle and practice.  We’ll talk about CMMI and process improvement.  We’ll share best practices, tips and techniques.  We’ll dig into what we’re all doing to deliver value.  And we’ll have a back-and-forth on how to maximize impact and business results that we can all take home to our organizations.

And what better place for conversations about the power of process improvement than at SEPG North America, with people like you and me, who get it?

So come on down and talk with folks who understand.  And don’t forget to register by February 10, 2012.  You’ll save up to $300 off regular, full-conference registration rates.

Need more reasons?  Check back soon for Reason #7.

Jeff Dalton is President of Broadsword Solutions Corporation and the incoming Chairman of the SEI’s Partner Advisory Board.  He can be reached at appraiser@broadswordsolutions.com.