Tuesday, March 18, 2014


One big difference between intrapreneurs and entrepreneurs is that intrapreneurs must care about the infrastructure they are disturbing. For an intrapreneur, achieving buy-in for an idea is key.

In my experience, true buy-in is best achieved through 3 stages: form a team, find a champion, and achieving true buy-in from a decision maker.

Read the full article on Huffington Post - http://www.huffingtonpost.com/debbie-madden/intrapreneur-playbook-3-s_b_4987426.html

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

4 Ways Your Business Can Benefit from Agile Engineering Practices Today

Creating useful software is a craft. There is no black and white formula for success. Yet, there are certain Agile engineering practices that, if used thoughtfully, have shown to repeatedly add value to a business.  In this article, I’ll share 4 specific ways that your business can benefit today from Agile Engineering practices.

(If we use the basic formula of Scrum + Extreme Programming (XP) = Agile, I am referring to the XP piece of the equation when I say Agile Engineering Practices. Things like Test Driven Development, Pair Programming, & Continuous Integration.)

In a brilliantly simple blog post, James Shore claims:

"Scrum is easier and less threatening than XP(Extreme Programming), so I see a lot more people starting out with Scrum. On the downside, the teams that start with Scrum tend to struggle more than the teams that start with XP. The XP teams experience more pain starting out, but then get to a high performance state within the first year." 

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Jim McCann’s Most Valuable Lesson About Life and Business

Tonight, I had the pleasure of attending an Inc Business Owner’s Council (IBOC) event in New York City. Jim McCann, the founder and CEO of 1-800-Flowers.com spoke with an intimate gathering of 30 entrepreneurs for about an hour.  

I’ve been a member of the IBOC for 5 years, and I’ve been fortunate to have a front row seat to some pretty amazing, small gatherings of various wildly successful people. But until tonight I’ve never met someone like Jim.

Monday, March 3, 2014

3 Recruiting Tactics You’re Probably Missing Out On

Whether you’re a startup looking for your first employee, or an established firm looking to scale, keeping on top of the best hiring practices is a key competitive advantage. Here are three recruiting tactics that are underutilized:

1. Gender-Neutral Hiring Practices

In 2013, a study published in the American Psychological Association by the authors Gaucher, Friesen, & Kay called, “Evidence That Gendered Wording inJob Advertisements Exists and Sustains Gender Inequality, ” concluded that certain masculine-themed words impacted the percentage of women that applied for jobs.