Upgrade Your Windows XPerience

"If you're a #cio still without an XP migration plan you shouldn't be a CIO!"- Will Lassalle

The above is a quote from me last week during the Microsoft CIO Summit. I mean every word of it. Matter of fact I would go so far as to tell the CFO or CEO that the CIO reports to, to take a chance and hire me at least I am not leaving your organization at tremendous risk. 

On April 8, 2014 - 51 Weeks away from now- Microsoft will terminate extended support for the wonderful Operating System Windows XP. That will mean big problems for PC users and bigger problems for organizations that still rely on Windows XP.

Windows XP still maintains close to a 39% hold on the desktop operating system market. Think about that for a minute. With less than a year to go on extended support (which means no more security updates) 39% of the worlds desktops still run an operating system from 2001. I dont know if that is a testament to Windows XP or another kick to the dead horse known as Windows Vista. What I do know is that CIOs and IT departments have a problem.

I follow the iPhone JB scene and for the most part exploits in iOS are searched for and when found kept secret in a classic cat and mouse game being played by Apple and Jailbreakers. Jailbreakers find an exploit and wait for a new software update from Apple so as to not burn the exploit. Apple plugs the exploit in a future revision. Rinse and Repeat.

Now imagine malicious hackers chomping at the bit to expand their bot-nets realizing they have MILLIONS of machines that will be exposed to whatever exploit(s) they find that are not patched and more than likely will not be patched after April 8, 2014. 

I guess some IT directors and CIOs are hoping/suspecting that Microsoft will be the good guy here and extend Windows XP support....AGAIN. 


Enough is enough. Sure Windows 8 has its detractors but Windows 7 has been given glowing marks and ~45% of the desktops in the world are already on it. I have worked on two successful XP to Windows 7 migrations and 1 failed XP to Windows Vista migration. Migrations are very time consuming with the biggest time consumer being application testing/remediation.

There are so many tools available now, including application virtualization that should make migrating easier than ever. Whats the excuse for not having a plan or already having migrated off of Windows XP? Budgets? Please! Go ahead be "Penny Wise Pound Foolish". 

I put the blame squarely on IT leadership at these organizations. Sell the upgrade and the risks of not doing it to your CFO, CEO and/or Board of Directors. Do your job! Putting your organization at security risk is one thing but also not taking advantage of the productivity increases is another (and a topic for a future blog post). 

I know of an organization that was just infected with a 5 year old virus outbreak, mainly because of lack of IT leadership. The organization still runs Windows XP as the main OS. Needless to say they havent even started thinking about migrating off of Windows XP and surely will not get it done by April, 2014. They are so lazy they actually have virtualized Windows 95 to avoid rewriting an old DOS app!

So clueless CIOs and IT go ahead and focus on the whole BYOD, BIG DATA, and Business Intelligence craze. They will work great on a crippled and infected Windows XP network.

New Home for the Next Great CIO blog

Hello and welcome to the new home for the NEXT GREAT CIO blog.
Had to make the switch in anticipation of the increased Google Glass content and better integration with Google Plus.

The move should lead to increased content and a more media rich experience.
Thanks for visiting!

Lessons (Learned) Forgotten...


The purpose of lessons learned is to bring together any insights gained during a project that can be usefully applied on future projects.

Everything learned from previous projects, whether they were successes or failures can teach a project manager important lessons. And individual project managers usually do learn from their own previous experiences, but are these "lessons learned" shared with others within the project team or within the same organization or with the broader project management community as a whole?

Capturing lessons learned from projects is key for any organization. Unfortunately, project teams are usually moved quickly from project to project and capturing lessons learned is never a priority. To ensure efficiencies over time and development of best practices, it is essential to capture lessons learned on your projects.

Now the flipside to capturing lessons learned is ACTUALLY UTILIZING lessons learned in future/present projects! I have been working in formal project management for over 13 years now and have yet to come across an organization that actually looks at lessons learned captured from previous organizational projects while kicking off or initiating new projects.

"Those who don't know history are destined to repeat it"

Why organizations/PMOs and those who adopt PMI methodologies or require PMPs dont utilize Lessons Learned repositories is beyond me. It becomes very frustrating with high project failure rates to be in senior management and see issues arise that could have easily been avoided if they would have been mitigated early on from the knowledge gained of Lessons Learned from previous like/similar projects.

But organizations and PMOs  should not be the only ones on the hook for this epidemic that further leads to high failure on projects. Project Managers themselves need to take some blame too. Share your career portfolio project lessons learned in a blog, article, web site or your next networking event.

Maybe a great project that PMI, Prince2 or any other advancement of project management organization can do is create a global project lessons learned database. This database can accept and catalog lessons learned from project managers globally on projects of any kind. Organizations globally could/should contribute to this for the simple fact it will help them first and foremost but also help projects globally and investment of dollars lost into additional projects and the benefits of those projects.

http://www.zdnet.com/blog/projectfailures/worldwide-cost-of-it-failure-6-2-trillion/7627 - according to this article from 2009 the cost of IT Project failure globally is $6.2 TRILLION!!! $6.2 TRILLION!!!

Imagine a world where we could learn from these mistakes, and mitigate these project pitfalls early. Money that could be invested in infrastructure, innovation and new capabilities worldwide.

Its time for project mangers, organizations, and PMOs to start really documenting/using lessons learned to help deliver more projects successfully while avoiding the sins of the past.

Let me know your thoughts in the comments section!

Will Lassalle, PMP, MBA

Google "Glass" in the Mirror


I am very perplexed. Am I the only person who reads contest rules even if its just a glance?


Those are the cached rules for the #ifihadglass application to be selected as one of 8000 to preview google glass.

I see lots of people on both Google+ and Twitter who are very excited to be admitted into the google glass explorers program. You know the program outlined in the terms of the application which specifically states its $1500 PLUS APPLICABLE TAX! Since you can only pick up in one of 3 locations New York City, Los Angeles or San Francisco its also been outlined that you have to pay your way to get to one of those 3 sites to pick up the glasses after you have paid for it with your own credit card online. In New York City you would have to pay $1,633.13 for the glasses, in San Francisco or Los Angeles you would have to pay ~$1,635.

You also have to travel to the google location and pay your own way to get there. So you have to add in Travel and Expenses to get to NYC, LA or SF. This isn't a prize, you arent getting something for free, you are getting exactly what you signed up for!

Which is what confuses me from some winners who are complaining about not being able to pay the $1500(which is really over $1600 when uncle sam gets his cut plus Travel and Expense). Its a shame really. Hundreds out of the 8000 "winners" that will not be able to participate thus taking spots from people who actually took the time out to read the rules and would have made better choices for the simple fact they can follow rules/instructions.

My guess is that within a couple of weeks, Google will start out by asking people to pay the $1500+ applicable tax at a secure web site. Those that don't pay after a few days will be removed from the program and hopefully others asked to join.

I really admire those that have won and are trying to get the funds together in creative ways. There is a group on Google+ and you can follow the hash tag #glassexplorers on twitter.

Yet again, I am very Perplexed at those who think they have "won" something and never had any intention of really participating in the program. Unless they thought Google would just give away the glasses to the 8000. Eh I guess $12,000,000 is a drop in the bucket for Google what with all the free publicity they are getting from this.

I know what I am going to do with the Google Glasses, and I know a lot of peers that if selected would have done some awesome things with them. I think there is hope for them in a second chance drawing, once these people that "applied" but didn't read the rules' credit cards are declined.