Four Stages of Market Maturity

You can tell the maturity of a market by the consumer patterns.  If you know the life cycle stages of a market you can better anticipate what level of “needs” your product needs to match to be successful.  (I always think of needs in stages like Maslow’s hierarchy.) The Four Stages of Market Maturity Stage…


Love Your Dogs

I read an interesting article on behavioral economics by Harry Quarls, Thomas Pernsteine, and Kasturi Rangan, in “strategy+business” magazine.  According to the authors, behavioral finance supports a counter-intuitive strategy of loving your market “dogs” (underperformers) over your stars.  They pose a few questions up front:  What if conventional wisdom is wrong? What if corporations would be…


Kano, Satisfiers, and Dissatisfiers

If you’re looking for yet another way to help you prioritize your backlog or to help you shape your product’s design, consider the Kano model. One concept in the Kano model is satisfiers and dissatisfiers.  You can think of satisfiers as features you might ask for.  You can think of a dissatisfier as an unmet need. …


Rituals for Results

Routines help build efficiency and effectiveness.  Consistent action over time is the key to real results.  If you add continuous improvement or Kaizen to the picture, you have an unbeatable recipe for success.  The following are some of my rituals for results:  Put in your hours.  I heard that Hemingway wrote for two hours a…


Forcing Functions

Do you have a favorite set of forcing functions?  In patterns & practices, one of our forcing functions is building a slide deck.  Building a deck is a forcing function because it forces us to distill the points, close down on issues, identify what we know, don’t know and need to know next in a fairly…



Kaizen is a Japanese term for continuous improvement.  A little Kaizen goes a long way over time.  From a personal development standoint, it’s key for overcoming resistance.


Building Books in patterns and practices

Book building is art and science. I’ve built a few books over the years at patterns & practices. In this post, I’ll share a behind the scenes look at what it takes to do so. I’ll save the project management piece for another day, and focus on the core of book building.  Book ExamplesBefore we…


CodePlex, GE, and MSDN

One of the questions I get is how we build and publish our guides and what’s the relationship of CodePlex, GE and MSDN.  At a high-level, we build reusable guidance nuggets for customer questions and tasks.  We then build a larger guide to bring the nuggets together into a story. Together, this gives us both…


SDL for Apps and Verticals

What’s one path the SDL (Security Development Life Cycle) can take to amplify impact?  From my perspective, I think the key is specialization for app types and verticals.  I base this on lessons learned from  shaping prescriptive guidance over the years, the market trend for specialization, and what I learned doing competitive assessments. I also…


Getting Started with Threat Modeling

Threat Modeling is a way to identify potential security issues to help you shape your application’s security design.  If you need to create a threat model, and you aren’t sure how, here’s some links to get you started.  (Note that our patterns & practices threat modeling approach is adaptable for agile scenarios.  In fact, our…