Blow-up the Iron Triangle

I am presenting at the 7th Annual UT Dallas Project Management Symposium being held August 15-16, 2013. 

The conference theme is Project Management: Optimizing Value to Stakeholders. I thought this topic, Blow-up the Iron Triangle: Rethinking Software Project Approaches and Goals to Increase Business Value was not only catchy, but very relevant to the theme.

My inspiration was Jim Highsmith’s article, Beyond Scope, Schedule, and Cost: The Agile Triangle. It’s a great introduction to the concept and I expand on it a little bit with an example and the implications. I want to give a big shout-out to Jim for reviewing my accompanying paper and giving feedback.

You are welcome to download the paper and view the accompanying presentation below.


  1. Abraham Marín-Pérez (@AbrahamMarin)   •  

    It’s just a shame that the executors read this kind of publications (hence know of all the problems) while the executives stick to their old mantras (hence not giving a fart). Still interesting and powerful, I downloaded and printed the paper for further reading.

    • Jeffrey   •     Author

      Thanks for your comment, Abraham.

      It’s true, the people working in the system deal with pains in a way management doesn’t. It’s my hope this paper, which I attempted to focus on executives, can show some reasons for changing the way we look at IT. Stay tuned for further updates as I continue to work on this idea.

      And please, come back here and leave your feedback after you read the paper!

  2. @AbrahamMarin   •  

    Forget “Scope-Schedule-Cost”, think “Value-Quality-Constraints” — Blow-up the Iron Triangle

  3. @ajrandol   •  

    RT @JeffreyGoodReq: New presentation/paper: “Blow-up the Iron Triangle” | Plz give feedback on fixing IT project mgm…

  4. Abraham Marin-Perez (@AbrahamMarin)   •  

    I have read if now :). I think you’re spot on when you talk about projext managers controlling and being rewarded according to the wrong metrics. This problem can be solved in small to medium organisations since executives and executors are relatively close, but will be very hard in big organisations because of the layer of middle management.

    Executives are not going to tell middle management how to run the executors because that would be micromanaging them, and middle management are not going to change their own reward and control system to one they will benefit less from. I think this is why there is an exodus of IT professionals to smaller companies, where the conflict of interest is smaller and people focus in adding value, not on benefiting themselves.

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