Error messages and their influence on user experience

Sometimes, errors just happen in web development as well as in any other thing that people are involved in. It’s normal – we’re all human. The question is how to communicate error messages in a way, which makes them not only “technically correct”, but also really understandable for humans and help them reach what they actually wanted to do on your website. Today, I found this article about The 4 H’s of writing error messages, which helps to write human, helpful, humorous and humble error messages. An article I really liked, check it out.

Book: “Outliers – The story of success”

Some weeks ago, a colleague of mine recommended me a book called “Outliers – The story of success” by Malcolm Gladwell. It’s about successful people and understanding why they were able to outperform in their specific field. Other studies or books focused on intelligence, ambition – the classic story of someone, who started from nothing and became highly successful just by being talented and working hard. Without a doubt, most people who excel in their field actually do have talent and work hard. But to achieve huge success, make a fortune and become popular in a specific field, there seem to be many other factors that come into play and which are not obvious at first sight. Therefore, Gladwell looks at information about their family, birthplace, or even their birth date and analyzes this data. By doing that, he revealed other factors which were essential for the success of these people in their specific field. I really recommend this book – you can find it here: http://www.amazon.de/Outliers-Story-Success-Malcolm-Gladwell/dp/0316017930

First summary of my Kanban kick-off training

As posted before, I attended a one-day Kanban kick-off training held by Dr. Klaus Leopold from LEANability. I have to think it over a few more times, but I can definitely say that I found it very interesting. As other methods, Kanban itself does not solve fundamental problems you might face in your organisation – such as lacking motivation, unclear goals, changing priorities and things like that. What it does, is to provide lots of transparency which helps you to find problems in your working process. I am going to sum up my notes and write another blog entry in the following days!

How not to lead geeks

Great article, which I found in the LinkedIn news feed of a former colleague of mine that shows the ten worst mistakes you can make when working with developers. In my opinion, this article can be very useful for anybody working in the IT sector, e.g. managers, project or product managers, scrum masters, etc. For me, it summarizes what leadership is generally about: Have clear goals, explain them to other people in a language they understand, show them why it is important to achieve this goal, why their personal contribution is really needed, show real and honest interest in their profession, interests as well as their problems etc. Here you can find the article from Alexander Kjerulf: How not to lead geeks