Sessions at SXSW Interactive 2011 about Project Management

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Saturday 12th March 2011

  • Tools and Processes for ADD Project Managers/Entrepreneurs

    by Jason Ford

    Ever since grade school I've been told organization is my number one problem. Like most people involved in the web, I'm creative, technically proficient, and often lacking in focus. I've had to balance managing my personal disfunction with managing huge web projects and now running a startup business (FeedMagnet). More than once I've been introduced with the disclaimer, “Jason is really smart and talented...but he's kind of all over the place.”

    Nevertheless, I've determined to master my disfunction—and I've tried everything. Inbox Zero. GTD. Scrum and Agile. Countless systems involving whiteboards. Moleskines and the Hipster PDA. CRMs, RTM, and other TLAs. I won't claim I've found the holy grail of organization but I've made a lot of progress—and life and business are much more manageable now.

    This session is not for beginners. I'm going to assume you've already tried, or at least heard of, most of the popular project management and personal organization techniques out there. This session is for folks who have been fighting the same fight as me and are looking to learn from my mistakes and successes.

    Specific topics to cover: Why systems work (or don't) for individuals. How to map your individual profile of disfunction. Putting custom-tailored systems in place to meet your specific needs.

    If you have enough focus to have read this far, this session may not be for you—or maybe you are just desperate to figure this out and the session will be perfect.

    LEVEL: Advanced

    At 9:30am to 10:30am, Saturday 12th March

    In Salon D, Hilton Austin Downtown

Sunday 13th March 2011

  • App Savvy - Think First, Code Later

    by David Barnard, Natalia Luckyanova, Phillip Ryu, Ken Yarmosh and Christopher Brown

    Before a single pixel is created, a line of code is written, or a marketing plan is conceived, a prospective app should be looked at strategically. Questions like, “What devices should be targeted?,” “Which category provides the best opportunity for success?,” or "How much will this app cost?," can have direct impacts on the actual development process.

    This panel will explore the often overlooked, assumed, or ignored product strategy aspects of application development, describing them conceptually while showing them in practice for successful apps on the App Store.

    LEVEL: Beginner

    At 11:00am to 1:30pm, Sunday 13th March

    In Capitol E-H, Sheraton Austin Hotel at the Capitol

    Coverage slide deck

  • Bend Over? Surprise! Agencies Are Screwing You

    by Meghan Warby and Lucia Mancuso

    The agency model of billable hours, budget overruns and hierarchical team structures was built in the early 20th century. Although things have changed significantly thanks to technology, labor equity and innovation in other industries, this outdated model continues its vampire-like sucking of vendors dry.

    Examining the traditional model, we’ll identify reasons why agency-contracted work is potentially perilous for your business. Instead of being results-oriented, agencies charge hourly rates regardless of (un)successful outcomes. Agency staff, constrained by the pressure to bill hourly are stifled creatively and prevented from serving clients as best they can. Should these time sheet zombies continue representing brands to the public?

    Thankfully, many workable solutions exist: bring creative personnel in house, pay for quantifiable results, empower yourself to learn new necessary skills, insist on agency and vendor accountability, and more.

    As the sun sets on the agency world, and the ball is in the court of business owners. Are you ready to adapt to the 21st century and make a jump to a new way of doing business?

    LEVEL: Advanced

    At 11:00am to 12:00pm, Sunday 13th March

    In Rio Grande A, Marriott Courtyard Austin Downtown/Convention Center

Monday 14th March 2011

  • How To Hire And Manage A Developer

    by Steve Zehngut

    This presentation focuses on breaking down the communication barriers that can make working with a developer more difficult than it needs to be. The presentation will cover Interviewing Your Potential Developer, Planning & Project Managment, Using A Version Control System, and Bug Reporting. The session will give the audience a reality check on how to go about working with a developer to get a custom Wordpress site (or any digital project) built on time and on budget.

    LEVEL: Beginner

    At 11:00am to 12:00pm, Monday 14th March

    In Rio Grande A, Marriott Courtyard Austin Downtown/Convention Center

  • Project Management for Humans (No Robots Allowed)

    by Pamela Villacorta and Brett Harned

    Whether it’s on the front lines or behind the scenes, Project Management is critical to every discipline in web development projects. Keeping your internal project team and your clients happy while making sure that the project runs smoothly are not easy tasks, but you don’t have to be a robot to run a project! Simple humans can make sure a project is delivered on time and on budget.

    This session will cover the basics on how to manage your project like a pro and keep your clients happy. A group of seasoned project managers will share their experiences (and horror stories) on projects they’ve worked on, and point to specific, useful methodologies that have helped them to gracefully manage large and small projects alike.

    LEVEL: Beginner

    At 5:00pm to 6:00pm, Monday 14th March

    In Salon E, Hilton Austin Downtown