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Eric Graves

Aerospace and mechanical engineer turned NPD systems engineer, Eric spends his time engineering better product develop systems, using Playbook as his tool of choice!

Recent Posts

Resource loading: Get it right, launch early

Eric Graves - 03/14/19 03:10 PM

Resource loading is a critical project metric. Get it wrong and you could inadvertently commit to a seriously unrealistic project launch date....

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Risk Mitigation Strategy (Part 2)

Eric Graves - 03/12/19 10:05 PM

 

What is a risk mitigation strategy?

Mitigating a risk essentially means deliberately doing something to reduce risk exposure - to burn down the...

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How to Calculate Risk Exposure - free risk exposure calculator

Eric Graves - 03/12/19 05:02 PM

 

How to calculate risk exposure

In general, companies can take two approaches to calculating risk exposure, a quantitative approach and a...

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Risk Management Process

Eric Graves - 02/26/19 09:00 PM

Risk management has four steps. It is cyclical, and each risk, issue, question, and opportunity is put through the process as quickly as...

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Risk Drivers and 5 Whys

Eric Graves - 02/19/19 10:58 PM

Risk Drivers and 5 Whys

We begin the analysis phase and look at risk drivers and the 5 Whys technique - a simple and powerful technique for...

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Risk identification and risk capture

Eric Graves - 02/19/19 08:35 PM

Risk Identification and Capture

The first step in risk management is identifying risks and capturing them in a risk management spreadsheet. In...
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Risk Mitigation Strategy

Eric Graves - 02/19/19 05:30 PM

Risk Mitigation Strategy

In this post, we use a real life example--the risk of a product getting too hot--to demonstrate how to prioritize, manage...

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Push vs. Pull

Eric Graves - 02/12/19 02:00 PM

 

What is Push vs. Pull?

What is the difference between push vs pull. In a pull system, teams pull tasks from the backlog. As oppose to a push...

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8 Types of Risk and Risk Management Investment

Eric Graves - 02/5/19 08:57 PM

8 Types of Risk 

In order to examine risk exposure and uncertainty in greater detail, let's look at the different types of risks --uncertain...

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Lean Project Management Resource Management

Eric Graves - 02/4/19 03:09 PM

 

Resource Management

This is the fifth part of our series on Lean Project Management. In this post, we look at resource management. 

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Lean Project Management and Kanban

Eric Graves - 01/24/19 11:34 AM

This is the third part of our series on Lean project management.

In this post we discuss visual management’s role in Lean and Agile management and...
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Lean Project Management Methdology

Eric Graves - 01/17/19 01:12 PM

This is the second part of our series on Lean Agile Project Management.

In Part 1 we recognized that one of the primary drivers of success in...

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Lean Project Management

Eric Graves - 01/9/19 06:55 PM

Feeling like you are using the wrong tools to achieve your product development goals?

This is Part 1 of a series of posts on Lean Project...

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8 Ways to Decrease Risk in Project Decisions

Eric Graves - 01/8/19 06:30 PM

 

8 Ways to Decrease Risk in Project Decisions

So how do you increase certainty in project decisions. In part we can increase certainty by...

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ROI of Risk Management

Eric Graves - 01/1/19 09:47 PM

Return on Investment of Project Risk Management 

The Return on Investment in project risk management is high, and therefore worth the effort.

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Procurement Strategy That Works

Eric Graves - 12/4/18 05:23 PM

Procurement Strategy That Works

Shipment delays in product development happen. Packages get lost or dropped off at the wrong location. As a result...

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Cost of Delay Project Model Examples

Eric Graves - 11/27/18 06:43 PM

 

Project Modeling: Project Management Decisions Based on Profit

How do you make project decisions based on their impact on profit? Here are some...

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Cost of Delay and Project Modeling

Eric Graves - 11/20/18 04:39 PM

 

Cost of Delay and Project Modeling

In order to make project decisions such as whether or not to add a new feature, we need an economic model....

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Resource Availability - How to Calculate It

Eric Graves - 11/13/18 09:43 PM

The project team is falling behind schedule at a rapid rate. The major milestones and planned launch date are becoming further out of reach. You...

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Cost of Delay: How to Calculate It

Eric Graves - 11/13/18 04:13 PM

 

How to calculate the Cost of Delay

Here is a simple formula for quickly estimating Cost of Delay: the profit lost per-month of delay.

Total COD...

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Lean Agile Project Management (Part 2): Which Lean practices deliver the highest ROI?

Eric Graves - 07/19/18 05:47 PM

Feeling like you are using the wrong tools to achieve your product development goals?

This is Part 2 of a series of posts on Lean product...

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What is Lean Project Management?

Eric Graves - 07/17/18 11:48 AM

Feeling like you are using the wrong tools to achieve your product development goals?

This is Part 1 of a series of posts on Lean Project...

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What is Project Risk Management

Eric Graves - 04/3/18 05:45 PM

While on a recent trip to New Zealand to ramp up a new client, I took a little time after work to see some sights. Coincidently, I was also...

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5 Principles of Lean Project Management

Eric Graves - 03/8/18 12:00 PM

I recently read the new book Team of Teams – New Rules of Engagement for a Complex World, by General Stanley McChrystal. I’d like to share some of...

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8 Tips for Adopting Lean Project Management

Eric Graves - 02/8/18 06:00 PM

Achieving project flow is what enables project teams to have greater confidence task completion and launch dates. At Playbook, we have found that...

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Architectural Runway and WSJF

Eric Graves - 10/24/17 03:33 PM

What is an architectural runway?

Designing a new product with an architectural runway means supporting the business' ability to "land" new...

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WSJF (Weighted Shortest Job First) and How to Calculate It

Eric Graves - 09/28/17 03:57 PM

In life, sometimes it just seems easier to continue doing things the way we are used to instead of seeking new approaches that may cause the...

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14 Tips for Calculating Cost of Delay

Eric Graves - 03/9/17 06:30 PM

14 tips for calculating cost of delay. Implementing cost of delay and ultimately creating a project economic model for basing project decisions on...

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Cost of delay: Calculating economic value to increase profit (Part 7)

Eric Graves - 02/28/17 07:26 PM

This is Part 7 in a series of posts discussing Cost of Delay and making objective decisions in new product development, based on economic analysis.

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Early Learning in Hardware Development

Eric Graves - 12/15/16 04:00 PM

Early Learning in Hardware Development

This series is a comprehensive review of Agile and how to apply Agile to hardware product development. We...

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Making Hardware Development More Agile

Eric Graves - 12/1/16 06:23 PM

Optimizing Hardware Development to be More Agile

So how do you make hardware development more Agile? In this part, part 5, we examine Agile's 3...

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Agile Principle 2: Welcoming changing requirements

Eric Graves - 11/29/16 06:22 PM

Agile principle 2: Welcoming changing requirements

 

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Agile Principle 1: Early and Continuous Delivery of Value

Eric Graves - 11/22/16 06:21 PM

In the next three posts we discuss Agile principles and how to apply the principles in hardware development. In this post we look at delivering...

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Agile Values

Eric Graves - 11/15/16 02:26 PM

Component procurement time, component cost, and the variety of skills needed on most hardware development projects are greater and represent in...

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Applying Agile to Hardware Development (part 1)

Eric Graves - 11/8/16 06:30 PM

 

Agile development

Yes, Agile can be applied to hardware development! Learn which Agile principles apply to hardware, which don't and a hybrid...

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Setting a target launch date (project baseline) too early is a recipe for project delays

Eric Graves - 11/3/16 04:31 PM

Lean methods and Agile principles recognize that it’s almost impossible to get anything absolutely right the first time. Testing and iterating are...

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Agile Hardware Development: Agile Principles 4 - 12

Eric Graves - 11/1/16 05:25 PM

We agree. Hardware product development is different than software. So when we apply Agile principles, we need a different approach.

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Risk Management for Hardware (Part 12): Risk Mitigation Strategy

Eric Graves - 10/18/16 04:15 PM

Making the trade-off between scope, schedule, and cost, and making decisions that maximize the top-level goal of making a profit is at the heart...

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What is Lean Product Development

Eric Graves - 09/21/16 03:34 PM

What is Lean Product Development?  The Lean landscape is confusing because there are many flavors of Lean. But here is our definition...

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Resource Leveling - It's Critical!

Eric Graves - 08/30/16 06:05 PM

 

What is Resource Leveling?

Resource leveling in and across projects is traditionally defined as “The process of using a company's resources in...

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Objects Impacted and Modular Architecture

Eric Graves - 08/2/16 03:46 PM

Objects Impacted and Modular Architecture

It's critical to capture the objects impacted by a risk in order to understand risk exposure, as well as...

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Project Risk and Project Objectives

Eric Graves - 03/17/16 05:11 PM

Project Risk and Project Objectives

Evaluating risks starts by defining and understanding a project’s objectives. If there aren’t any objectives,...

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Agile vs. Waterfall Product Development

Eric Graves - 02/26/16 06:00 PM

Agile vs. Waterfall

Recently I came across an article on the Dummies.com website comparing the traditional Waterfall method (Phased and Gated) to...

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Four Agile Product Development Techniques That DON’T Work for Hardware

Eric Graves - 02/2/16 06:40 PM

At Playbook, creating velocity in product development projects has been our passion for 18 years. As a result, we’ve analyzed Agile and other...

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11 Lean Project Management Tips for Achieving Your Project Launch Date

Eric Graves - 07/14/15 08:01 PM

I heard recently some people in software development were proposing that there be ‘no projects’, because ‘projects’ create batches and stifle...

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Lean Startup Methodology and Early Learning

Eric Graves - 05/20/14 05:49 PM

The series explores the relationship between Lean Startup Principles, Knowledge Based Product Development, and Project Risk Management, and how...

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Lean Startup Methodology

Eric Graves - 03/20/14 06:19 PM

Lean Startup Methodology and Product Development

There has been a lot of discussion about Lean Startup principles and whether they apply to...

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Cost of Delay and Strategic Advantage

Eric Graves - 02/1/14 09:26 PM

 

Uncertainty in Product Development

Gaining a strategic advantage through statistics and mathematical analysis is changing the game of product...

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Lean and Agile New Product Development Systems and How They Parallel a Fighter Jet Flight System

Eric Graves - 11/16/13 09:27 PM

Being an Aerospace Engineer by training, I find some parallels from time to time between product development systems and flight systems. One that...

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11 Lean and Agile Tips for Achieving Your Project Launch Date

Eric Graves - 10/19/13 09:09 AM

I heard recently some people in software development proposing that there be "no projects," because projects create batches and stifle flow. Being...

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Changing Mindsets by Applying Lean and Agile Methods

Eric Graves - 09/12/13 09:11 AM

Hello world! This is my first entry into the blogging business. I hope to have many great discussions with you. Please allow me to introduce...

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