All Posts By Jason Mundok

Jason is a custom software consultant, project management coach, and co-founder of Elusive Moose. Since 2000, he has been helping others improve their processes through the development of custom business solutions, workflow consulting, training, and coaching.

Improving

A Grateful Farewell

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It was two years ago this month when Molly and I met for a couple days in Chicago to discuss an idea we had been working on to explore the quest to find happiness and fulfillment in our work lives. We both really enjoyed our careers in custom software consulting and the work we had done coaching other consultants. We both found great satisfaction in our work and were interested in finding ways to share our experiences, further explore what it meant to intentionally pursue a fulfilling work life, and offer a platform for others to do the same.  We knew first hand that it was very possible to enjoy your work, and we wanted to help others know that as well. Our two-day meeting ended with the decision to give it a shot, and Elusive Moose was born. In the two years since, Molly and I hosted two conferences, produced a podcast, conducted a series of interviews, wrote a bunch of blog articles, and connected with some of the most inspiring people I’ve ever known. I personally explored my own work life experiences, shared my successes and failures, experimented with new ideas and ways of being, and gave a […]

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Improving

Freelance Business Success Summit

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Joel Bergeron from The Future is Creative has brought together 25+ of the best experts and industry leaders for a completely free online conference to teach you exactly how to… Start, launch, and grow your freelance business in any niche or industry. Identify your ideal client Brand and position your business Price your work based on value Avoid common mistakes And much much more… From planning your transition to freelance, identifying your valuable skills, positioning your freelance business, branding, pricing, getting clients, and even product or service creation, Freelance Business Success Summit is going to be a life changing event. This summit provides a roadmap for anyone dreaming of creating a life and growing a business as a freelancer. It’s perfect for any software developer currently working for someone else who wants to break out and start a dream business. I’m honored to be one of the speakers for this summit. I’ll be presenting topics around finding fulfilling work as an independent software developer and what it takes to be a successful project manager. You can check out all the details HERE !

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Doing

Rally Against Common Enemies: Budget, Scope, Timeline

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Build solid unified teams for your software development projects by identifying common enemies to rally against. In this case of software development projects, here are three things that everyone wants to avoid: blown budgets, scope creep, and missed deadlines. By framing these as common enemies, the entire project team will work together to defeat them on your way to successful project outcomes. Budget Regardless of how you define the budget of your project, nobody wants to spend more money than expected. If you’re billing hourly, sure you can charge for everything you do, but the client still has an expectation (hopefully clearly defined by you) and isn’t going to be pleased if the cost of the project exceeds that expectation. If you’re billing a flat fee for the project, then you need to make sure you don’t end up giving away a lot of valuable work just because your client asks for more stuff. Even though the client won’t get charged more, you’ll eventually resent working for free. A blown budget in either direction makes for an un-unified project team and opens a door to adversity and blame games. The budget, however defined, is the responsibility of the entire team. […]

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Member Guides & Training, Members

Moose Guide: Finding Common Enemies for Better Client Relationships

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In order to build and maintain a collaborative spirit between all members of a custom software development project team, we must find ways for everyone to see the entire team as their own “in-group”. First we must create a solid foundation for the project by adopting a project management process that can be clearly articulated. Then we must be sure that everyone on the team is comfortable with the process through clear and consistent communication every step of the way. Finally, we must make sure that the entire team, including the future consumers of the software, has a solid understanding of how the technology works, so we can set reasonable expectations about the final delivered system. With a collaborative foundation in place for projects, project managers can guide the project team through the development process using techniques outlined in this guide to convert blown budgets, scope creep, and missed timelines into common enemies that everyone on the team will look to defeat. When we work together toward shared goals and against shared enemies, project teams collaboratively strive to make software development projects successful for everyone. Looks like you found a page that's for members only. Username Password Remember Me   […]

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Managing

New Value Pricing Podcast from Jonathan Stark

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Our friend and colleague, Jonathan Stark, released a new value pricing podcast called Ditching Hourly. It’s a weekly show that helps software developers increase their profits, decrease their labor, and delight their clients. Jonathan has been a proven advocate of value-based pricing for software development projects for over ten years, so Ditching Hourly focuses on those pricing strategies rather than traditional time and materials billing. You can check out the first five episodes right here. Jonathan has been a friend of Elusive Moose since its inception. He has been a featured speaker about both of our Find Your Moose conferences, a guest on our Expert Interview series, and a guest on the Elusive Moose podcast.

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Members, Webinar Video

Webinar Video: Ten Elements of a Software Development Project

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Last week I hosted a webinar to complement Ten Elements of a Software Development Project, a Moose Guide that we published earlier in the year. These ten elements represent the aspects of a development project that you are already dealing with (whether you know it or not), and that you have to deal with regardless of the project management process you use. By learning what makes up a project, you can audit your own processes and figure out where you have room to improve. You can download the slides here. Please let me know if you have any comments or questions. *** This was my first time using the WebinarNinja platform. There were some audio issues about halfway through the webinar. You can still hear the presentation, but the quality of the audio varies. Looks like you found a page that's for members only.

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Doing

Webinar: audit your project management process

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Being a great developer doesn’t automatically lead to successful software development projects. You also need to know how to successfully execute and manage your projects. The very first step to awesome project management is having a project management process and knowing how to articulate it to your team, both the developers and your clients. For over five years I’ve been teaching software consultants how to implement a simple Agile project management methodology. From the experience of working with several development shops I have identified ten elements of a software development project. Whether you know it or not, you’re dealing with these project elements every time you build a new custom application for one of your clients. Learn the ten elements of a software development project so you can audit your own process and find out where you can improve Join me on Wednesday, October 12 at 2:00 p.m. ET (11:00 a.m. PT) for a FREE webinar about the Ten Elements of a Software Development Project. Here’s what you’ll learn: The ten elements of every software development project Whether or not you have a consistent process for each Where you should focus your process improvement efforts There will be plenty of […]

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Doing

Agile Software Development on Freelance Transformation

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I recently had the pleasure of exploring Agile software development and project management with Matt Inglot on the Freelance Transformation podcast.  Matt has been running a web development agency for over 10 years. In the first seven of those years, he made a lot of mistakes and just wasn’t getting ahead. Eventually he started making great decisions and transformed his business to create his desired lifestyle and achieve financial freedom. The Freelance Transformation podcast is all about sharing the tips, tricks, and techniques Matt has used to build a successful agency. Beyond the podcast itself, Matt shares recommended resources and articles to help you achieve your freelancing goals. CLICK HERE TO LISTEN TO THE EPISODE Elusive Moose is all about helping software developers and consultants manage successful businesses. We’re offering a FREE Moose Guide to help you learn more about the Ten Elements of a Software Development Project and figure out where you should be focusing to improve your project management approach. Download a FREE copy NOW. * You will be subscribed to our email list and receive super helpful tips and advice from Molly Connolly and me to help you manage your software development consulting business. Unsubscribe at any time, but I really don’t […]

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Improving

Bringing the Moose to the Freelancers’ Show

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The Freelancers’ Show discusses the challenges that freelancers face. It’s a panel podcast that includes experienced technology freelancers and entrepreneurs. I recently had the privilege of being a guest on the show with Charles Max Wood and Philip Morgan to talk about enjoying your work and discovering a fulfilling role within software development and consulting. This is a great preview for the keynote talk I’ll be doing at our next Find Your Moose conference coming up in Chicago on September 7 & 8, 2016. Find all of the conference details here. The Freelancers’ Show is published at DevChat.tv, which has a mission to empower programmers to change the world by helping them better understand the technologies, tools, processes, and possibilities of their craft. The mission is to show programmers how to use the tools and technologies at their disposal to reach for things that were once impossible but can now be enhanced by their code. DevChat.tv provides online audio and video content through podcasts, screencasts, online courses, and conferences. Go HERE and check out my guest appearance on the Freelancers’ Show. Go HERE to subscribe to the show on iTunes. Thanks to Charles and Philip for the hospitality and be sure to check out Philip’s guest […]

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Member Guides & Training, Members

Moose Guide: Ten Elements of a Software Development Project

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Each time you execute a custom software development project, whether it’s a business app, mobile app, or website, you are working through—or reacting to—each of the following ten elements of that project. Implementing a specific and intentional process for each of these elements is critical for a software consultant to consistently execute successful projects. Discovery - information gathering process to identify the problem Scope - definition of the proposed solution Kick-Off - initial meeting following project approval Planning - ongoing sessions to further define the solution Development - creation of the software Testing - internal debugging and feature testing Review - ongoing sessions to review and approve features Reporting - status reports to the team on budget and status Changes - new ideas or features that emerge during the project Delivery - deployment of the new system or new features If you struggle with project management or simply think that you could do better, the first step is to analyze how you approach each of these ten elements of a project. If you can’t articulate how you address them during your projects, or if members of your team are acting on them differently, then you have plenty of room for […]

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