Product Manager or Project Manager?

In the companies I worked before, the two roles of Product Manager and Project Manager, were separate roles, because their responsibilities were different and could be done by one person. In F-Startup, the company I was initially hired as a Product Manager, the Product Manager and Project Manager job was the same thing. Despite the fact I knew the two roles can’t be played by the same person, I accepted the challenge to assume responsibilities of both roles. Initially I looked everything as an experiment, because I strongly believed I can do both function in the same time.  Continue Reading →

EVM, KPIs for evaluation of staff, projects and company

In three of the startups I have worked, one of my responsabilities was to define performance KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) for the employees. As an experiment, I tried to see in what degree the Earned Value Management (SPI and CPI) parameters can be used to evaluate the performance of the employees and the projects. I started with a pilot project where I have collected a series of informations for each team/resources/feature. Continue Reading →

How important are the diplomas and certifications?

The only diploma, I found useful in my professional life, was the Bachelor Degree, because it helped me to get hired. The master diploma didn’t helped me to get a better job and didn’t make me smarter, but helped me to get a very cheap accommodation in one of the best student dormitories and I save the money for rent.

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The Unwanted Employee

I remember how was my first job interview. At that time, I was still a student, I hadn’t defined yet a goal in life, I had no professional experience. The purpose of my life was to learn and enjoy life. If you ask me why I wanted a job, I don’t really know, because I was feeling pretty good as a student with no obligations. But all my colleagues already had a job and because I was in a direct competition with them, I felt necessary to find myself a job. For the beginning, in order to get hired, I would have worked even for free or as volunteer at the Red Cross in Africa. Few companies have shown an interest on my profile and it took quite long until someone gave me the opportunity of an interview. But in the end, an employer called me to a face to face interview.

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Back Into the Future

March 8. CEO announce that we have an opportunity to sign a partnership with all the Malls in town:

-In order to make the deal, we just need to give them a simple mobile application. But we need it in one month! said CEO delighted. Continue Reading →

Conflicts from a different perspective

Some studies say the main source of conflicts in companies are: organizational conflicts (when there is a discrepancy between actual and perceived values, needs and interests of individuals or groups of individuals), some studies says the economical conflicts (when companies lack the available resources) or conflicts about understanding the project objectives and scope are the most important (it may seem there is always an inconsistency between how a client, manager and employees understand the scope of work). All the source of conflicts mentioned above are equally important, however there is no unified opinion among experts regarding which is the key factor in conflicts. But for one thing I am certain: in all companies I worked before, regardless the type of conflict involved, the ugliest conflicts was due to improper communication. Continue Reading →

Ups, We Are Fired!

9:00 AM. The most “pleasant” way of starting a new day of work is by receiving the following shocking email:  ”The shareholders of this company decided 109 employees will be disposed (meaning almost all employees will be fired). The board of directors will try to find solutions and provide alternatives for his employees“. And that’s all folks, the story of our parent company ends here. Continue Reading →