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Jim Johnson

Jim Johnson is the founder and chairman of The Standish Group. He has been professionally involved in the computer industry for over 40 years and has a long list of published books, papers, articles and speeches. He has a combination of technical, marketing, and research achievements focused on mission-critical applications and technology. He is best known for his research on project performance and early recognizing technology trends. Jim is a pioneer of modern research techniques and continues to advance in the research industry through case-based analytical technology.

Advice Articles

A Perfect Mess

Jim Johnson gives A Perfect Mess by Eric Abrahamson and David H. Freedman 3 out of 5 butterflies.

A Whole New Mind

Jim Johnson rates A Whole New Mind 4 out of 5 butterflies.


Against the Gods Review

Jim Johnson gives Against the Gods four out of five butterflies.

Agile Coaching

Jim Johnson rates Agile Coaching 5 out of 5 butterflies.

Alexander the Great

Alexander the Great is one of the greatest military strategist and tacticians of all times.


Jim Johnson suggests awareness provides the attachment to the project success and goals. 

Babe Ruth

George Herman Ruth, Jr.  AKA Babe Ruth, was one of greatest players in the history of baseball.

Balanced Risk

The country was in the middle of financial depression.

Battle of Agincourt

The sun rose brightly following two days of heavy rain.

Battle of Crécy

King Phillip VI of France met King Edward III of England at the Battle of Crécy on August 26, 1346.

Battle of Hastings

On October 14, 1066, the Battle of Hastings took place between the Saxon King, Harold, and the Norman Duke, William.

Battle of New Orleans

In the popular Johnny Horton song the lyrics go like this: We fired our guns and the British kept a'comin; There wasn't nigh as many as there was a while ago; We fired once more and they began to runnin' on; Down the Mississippi to the Gulf of Mexico.

Battle of Tippecanoe

William Henry Harrison is better known for his longest inaugural address and his shortest presidency.

Blink Book Review

Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking is book by Malcolm Gladwell.

Bully Pulpit

A bully pulpit is an advantageous position from which to express one's views.


In 324 A. D. the Roman emperor Constantine moved the empire's capital to Byzantium, renaming it Constantinople.

Change Habits

Grover Cleveland, 24th President of United States, had a habit of making changes.

Change management

Jim Johnson suggests you consider change management software to keep track of versions.

Chester Alan Arthur! Who?

Chester Alan Arthur became an accidental president with the long and painful death of James Garfield at the hands of an assassin.

Code duello

Code duello is a set of rules for duels.

Coffee Club

They first gathered in a small storefront on Tower Street in London that offered coffee.

Colonel Hugh Ogden

On January 15th, 1919 in the North End neighborhood of Boston, Massachusetts had a large molasses storage tank burst, and a wave of molasses rushed through the streets at an estimated 35 mph killing 21 and injuring 150.

Communication Habits

Ronald Reagan, 40th President of United States developed a habit of communicating just the right amount of information to get his message across.

Community Values

Jim Johnson suggests you establish values and benefits for the organization as motivation to create and maintain a PM community.


Jim Johnson suggests that all executives should be in the same boat.

Confessions of a Serial Entrepreneur

Confessions of a Serial Entrepreneur: Why I Can’t Stop Starting Over is a book by Stuart Skorman with help from Catherine Guthrie.

Confronting Reality

Jim Johnson rates “Confronting Reality: Doing What Matters to Get Things Right ” 3 out of 5 butterflies.

Connections Habits

James Buchanan, 15th President of United States had a habit of creating and keeping connections.


Jim Johnson suggests gaining consensus through conversation.

Continuous Delivery

Jim Johnson suggests you stop doing releases.

Convention of 1852

The Democratic Presidential convention of 1852 fielded many notable contenders of their time.


Jim Johnson suggests conversation is the first step in any agile process.


D-Day had two plans, the real plan and the fake plan.

Dark Horse

During the Republican Presidential Convention of 1880 they adopted a unanimously state delegate rule.

Death March

Soon after Pearl Harbor, Japan invaded the Philippines.

Decision Habits

William McKinley, 25th President of United States, had a habit of taking power by making rapid and firm decisions.

Declaration of Independence

The first shot of the American Revolutionary War was fired on April 19, 1775, in the Town of Lexington, Massachusetts.

Dewey Wins

The 1948 presidential election pitted accidental incumbent President Harry S.Truman against very popular and highly favored New York Republican Governor Thomas E. Dewey.

Diogenes the Cynic

Around 337 B.C., Alexander the Great went to visit Diogenes the Cynic in Corinth near Athens.


Jim Johnson gives Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us 3 of 5 butterflies by Daniel Pink.

Edmond Hoyle

Edmond Hoyle was born in London in 1671.


Jim Johnson gives Einstein: His Life and Universe by Walter Isaacson 3 out of 5 butterflies.

Election Dispute over Florida

He won the popular vote, he thought he won the Electoral College, and he thought he was the new president.

Eli Whitney

The cotton that grew inland in the southern United States had tacky green seeds and took workers several hours to remove them from the fluffy white plant.


Jim Johnson suggests that all projects need an evangelist

Failing Forward

Jim Johnson gives Failing Forward Turning Mistakes into Stepping Stones for Success five out of five butterflies. 

Father of the Constitution

James Madison, fourth president of the United States, is considered the father of the constitution.

Fear Itself

Franklin D.Roosevelt said in his first inaugural address, delivered on March 4, 1933. "Our distress comes from no failure of substance.

Fireside Chat

Franklin D. Roosevelt (FDR), Thirty-third President of the United States, gave a weekly radio address to the nation during his four terms that became known as the fireside chat.

First Healer

Gerald Ford had good chemistry.

Fix it and Forget It

im Johnson suggests fix it and forget It is the big advantage of no releases.

Focusing Habits

Franklin Delano Roosevelt, 32nd President of United States, had a habit of focusing on the important items.

For Want of a Nail

There is an old proverb that goes: For want of a nail the shoe was lost; For want of a shoe the horse was lost; For want of a horse the rider was lost; For want of a rider the message was lost.


Jim Johnson suggests fraudulence is an action intended to deceive.

Freedom From Fear

Jim Johnson rates Freedom From Fear 5 out of 5 butterflies.

General George McClellan

Born in Philadelphia in 1826, George Brinton McClellan graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and West Point in engineering studies.

George Washington

Lesson Six: George Washington Many stories are told about the first president of the United States, including Washington's statement: "Yes father, I did cut the cherry tree.

Get Your Point Across in 30 Seconds

Jim Johnson gives How to Get Your Point Across in 30 Seconds or Less 4 out of 5. 

Good Luck Charm

William McKinley, twenty-fifth President of the United States, loved carnations and wore them as a good luck charm.

Good Manners

Jim Johnson suggests good manners is the starting point of respect.

Good Manners Reviewed

Jim Johnson gives Good Manners: Making People Feel Better by Author, Deaver Brown a rating of 3 out of 5 butterflies.

Google Story

Jim Johnson rates The Google Story 3 out of 5 butterflies.

Great Society

In the mid-1960s, as part of President Johnson's "Great Society", the United States Congress passed the Economic Opportunity Act.


At midnight on October 25, 1942, on Guadalcanal, the Imperial Japanese Army attacked the U. S. Marines who were defending Henderson Field, the island's air base.

Henry VIII

Henry VIII was King of England from 1509 to 1547.

Herbert Hoover

When most people think of Herbert Hoover, they normally think of his inactions during the Great Depression.

Highway to the Orient

Millard Fillmore, 13th President of the United States, is best known for his obscurity than his accomplishments.

History of Peer Reviews

Peer reviews have been around since Greek philosophers commented on each other's over their theories and lectures.

Hot Group Six

The definition of a hot group is a special and elite team that comes together to solve a discrete issue or finish a troubled project.

Hot Groups Specialize

Jim Johnson rate Hot Groups: Seeding Them, Feeding Them, & Using Them to Ignite Your Organization by Jean Lipman-Blumen & Harold Leavitt 4 out 5 butterflies.

How To Win Friends and Influence People

Jim Johnson gives “How To Win Friends and Influence People” 5 out of 5 butterflies.

Human Iceberg

Benjamin Harrison, twenty-third president of United States, loved to talk and give speeches.

I Can See You Naked

Jim Johnson gives “I Can See You Naked” 4 out of 5 butterflies.


Jim Johnson suggests ignorance is the condition of being unaware. 

In Russia with Love

President James Madison appointed by John Quincy Adams as the first official U. S. representative to Russia. Madison provided Adams with a total operating budget of $9,000 per year. This included his salary, housing and all entertainment allowance.

In Search of the Obvious

Jim Johnson gives "In Search of the Obvious, The Antidote for Today's Marketing Mess" a rating 4 out of 5 butterflies. 

Inaugural Ball

Dolley Madison knew how celebrate and she knew how to give a party.


Jim Johnson rates Influence The Power to Change Anything by authors: Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, David Maxfield, Ron McMillan, and Al Switzler 4 out of 5 butterflies.

Information Selection

Jim Johnson suggests the main barrier to awareness is information overload.


Jim Johnson rates Inspired “Take Your Product Dream from Concept to Shelf” by Vik Venkatraman 3 out of 5 butterflies.


Jim Johnson suggests you start your project research with interviews.

James Monroe

On March 26, 1796 James Monroe, United States Ambassador to France sent Secretary of State, Timothy Pickering, a report on France's reaction to the Jay's Treaty with Great Britain.

Jimmy Ten Cents

In the months leading up to the presidential election of 1840 that pitted the re-election of Democrat Martin Van Buren against the Whig William Henry Harrison the Whigs instituted a new strategy.

John Basilone

John Basilone was a United States Marine Gunnery Sergeant who received the Medal of Honor for his actions at the Battle of Guadalcanal during World War II.

John Paul Jones

John Paul Jones, one of the most colorful Naval Captains in history is credited with being the father of the United States Navy.

John Tyler's Quandary

John Tyler became president of the United States in 1841 after the sudden death of William Henry Harrison.

Joseph Stalin

Joseph Stalin was a major participant in the Russian revolution.

Judgment Habits

Calvin Coolidge, 30th President of United States enjoyed a habit of making good judgments throughout his life.

Julius Caesar

Julius Caesar is considered one of the greatest military strategist and tacticians of all time.

Legacy of Ashes:

Jim Johnson rates Legacy of Ashes: The History of the CIA four out of five butterflies.

Legend of Marathon

The Marathon-Athens highway runs from Marathon Bay in Greece to the Capital City of Athens for 26 miles.

Leonardo da Vinci

Leonardo da Vinci is best known for his painting of the Mona Lisa and the Last Supper.

Leonardo's Champions

Leonardo da Vinci is best known for his paintings of Mona Lisa, The Last Supper and Vitruvian Man.

Lewis and Clark

In 1804, Captains Meriwether Lewis and William Clark set out on their famous expedition.

Liberty Ships

During the first part of World War Two, the United States remained neutral.

Little Magician

Martin Van Buren was no accidental president.

Live Free or Die

Winning the New Hampshire Primary is considered a gateway to the presidency.

Lorena Hickok

During the 1932 presidential campaign (Hoover verses Roosevelt), Lorrna Hickok's job was to cover Eleanor Roosevelt for the Associated Press.

Made to Stick

Jim Johnson gives Made to Stick 5 out of 5 butterflies.

Malice to None

On April 9, 1865 General Robert E. Lee surrendered the Army Northern Virginia to Lt. General Ulysses S. Grant in the village of Appomattox's Court House.

Managing in the Next Society

Managing in the Next Society is a book by Peter F. Drucker.

Meeting in Half Time

Jim Johnson rates “How to Run a Successful Meeting in Half the Time” 4 out of 5 butterflies.

Melvin Purvis

Melvin Purvis was J. Edgar Hoover's number-one FBI agent for a time, and easily the Bureau's most famous operative during the 1930s.

Mentoring Habits

John Quincy Adams, 6th President of United States, gained his presidential habits through mentoring by his father, John Adams the second president.

Midnight Ride of Paul Revere

On the midnight of April 18th, 1775 two riders left Charlestown, Massachusetts to warn the New England Militia of the coming for the British Army.

Missouri Compromise

In 1819 the Missouri territory applied for statehood. 


In 1768 Thomas Jefferson started building his home, Monticello, in Charlottesville, Virginia.

New Model Army

Lesson Eight: New Model Army Great Britain's King Charles I (1600-1649) and his archenemy Oliver Cromwell, a leader of the Parliamentarians, had been locked in a civil war for more than two years.

November 19, 1863

The battle began on July 1, 1863 around a town in south central Pennsylvania and ended three days later.

Ownership Habits

Harry S. Truman, 33rd President of United States had a habit of taking ownership of the problem.

Polk's Big Picture

Many historians consider James K. Polk as one of the top ten great US Presidents. Prior to being elected, he pledged to be a one-term president, but would work harder and longer than any president, before or after him, during those four years.

Predictably Irrational:

Jim Johnson rates Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions by Dan Ariely 3 of 5 butterflies.

Problem Habits

Grover Cleveland, 22nd President of United States, had a habit of focusing directly on the problem.

Putting a Man on the Moon

In 1961 President John F.Kennedy said the nation would put a man on the moon within a decade.

Quickly Get the Facts

Jim Johnson suggests you quickly get the facts. 

Reading People Book Review

How to Understand People and Predict Their Behavior – Anytime, Anyplace is a book written by Jo-Ellan Dimitrius and Wendy Patrick Mazzarella.

Release Baseline

Jim Johnson suggests you consider how WebEx develops and releases software.

Remember the Alamo

"We will give them no quarter," announced General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna of the Mexican army.

Require Participation

Jim Johnson suggests you require participation. 

Retrospective Actionable

Jim Johnson suggestions that ideas and recommendations that come out of a retrospective must be able to be implemented by the team.

Richard III

On April 9, 1483 King Edward IV of England died.

Robert G. Shaw

Robert G. Shaw was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1837 and died 25 years later on Morris Island, South Carolina.

Roman Gladiators

In ancient Rome a gladiator was a person trained to fight with other men or with animals for the amusement of spectator crowds.


Sages: Warren Buffett, George Soros, Paul Volcker and the Maelstrom of Markets is a book by Charles R. Morris. 

Selling Evangelists

Jim Johnson suggests you select an evangelist and then engage him or her as an evangelist and/or primary user representative.

Seventh Inning Stretch

William Howard Taft loved baseball and enjoyed going to major league games.

Shifting Priorities

The single defining issue of the presidential election of 1888 was the tariffs.

Silent Cal

His nickname was Silent Cal, but his real name was Calvin Coolidge.

Situational Sponsorship

Jim Johnson gives Situational Sponsorship of Projects and Programs 5 out of 5 butterflies.

Spartan Army

The ancient Spartan army was at its height from the sixth to fourth century BC.

Start-up of You

Jim Johnson gives The Start-up You a rating of 3 out of 5 butterflies. 

Super Crunchers

Jim Johnson gives Super Crunchers: Why Thinking-by-Numbers is the New Way to be Smart by  Author,  Ian Ayres a rating of 4 out of 5 butterflies.

Tacoma Narrows Bridge

On November 7, 1940 the Tacoma Narrows Bridge collapsed into Puget Sound.

Test Your Objectivity

Jim Johnson suggests use feedback to tests your objectivity.

The Education of a Coach

Jim Johnson gives The Education of a Coach by David Halberstam 3 out of 5 butterflies.

The Good Leader

Jim Johnson suggests the project manager needs to be a good leader.

The Great Bridge

Jim Johnson rates The Great Bridge: The Epic Story of the Building of the Brooklyn Bridge 5 out or 5 butterflies.

The Great Molasses Flood

It had been cold for several days.

The League of Nations

The League of Nations (League) was the brainchild of Woodrow Wilson.

The Man that Never Returned

No he'll never return.

The Match King

The Match King is a book by Frank Partnoy.

The One track Mind of Zachary Taylor

Zachary Taylor was the 12th President of the United States, but spent most of his life in the military service.

The Power of Habit

Jim Johnson gives The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg 4 out of 5 butterflies. 

The Privy Council

A privy council is a group of people who are appointed to advise the king or queen on political and governmental affairs.

The Secret Life of Houdini

Jim Johnson gives The Secret Life of Houdini 3 out of 5 butterflies.

The Ten Faces of Innovation Review

Jim Johnson gives The Ten Faces of Innovation three out of five butterflies.

The White House

On November 1, 1800, John Adams with his wife Abigail moved into the White House, which has been the home of every United States President since that time.

The Wisdom of Crowds

Jim Johnson gives The Wisdom of Crowds 3 out of 5 butterflies.

The World Is Flat

Jim Johnson rates The World Is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-first Century written by Thomas L. Friedman five out of five butterflies.

Thomas Edison

Jim Johnson recaps Thomas Edison is the most productive inventor in history.

Time Boxing

Jim Johnson suggests you consider the use of time boxing,


Jim Johnson suggests that stakeholders need to give feedback on a timely basis. 

Toxic Coping

Jim Johnson rates “A Guide to Coping with Difficult People at Work” 

Toxic Executive

President Andrew Johnson poisoned the congressional well when he vetoed the Civil Rights Act of 1866 that gave blacks equal rights.

Toyota Way

Jim Johnson rates Toyota Way 3 out of 5 butterflies. 

Training Habits

John F.Kennedy, 35th President of United States gained his presidential habits through formal education and training.

Trench Warfare

During the US Civil War trench warfare was invented and remain the primary tactic until the end of World War I.

True Compass

Jim Johnson rates True Compass 4 out of 5 butterflies.

Tuned In Book Review

Jim Johnson rates Tuned In: Uncover the Extraordinary Opportunities That Lead to Business Breakthroughs Rates 5 out of 5 butterflies. 

Tuned In with Empathy

Jim Johnson suggests you tune in with empathy.

USS Essex

In the early 1900s, Nantucket, a small Island off the Northeast coast of the United States was the Silicon Valley of the world.


In 1962, U.S. President John F. Kennedy committed 4,000 support troops to South Vietnam.

War Room

Winston Churchill said, "This is the room from which I will direct the war.

Warren G. Harding

On March 2, 1921, Warren Gamaliel Harding became the 29th President of the United States.


The Watergate scandal is a very good example of when a person has crossed the line from self-confidence into arrogance.

Who Says Elephants Can't Dance

Jim Johnson rates “Who Says Elephants Can't Dance?” 3 out of 5 butterflies.

Who Says Elephants Can't Dance?

Jim Johnson gives Who Says Elephants Can't Dance?: Inside IBM's Historic Turnaround by Louis V. Gerstner Jr. 3 out of 5 butterflies.

Wired to Care

Jim Johnson gives Wired to Care 3 out of 5 butterflies.

Work Like Da Vinci

Jim Johnson gives Work Like Da Vinci 3 out of 5 butterflies.

Yankee Clipper

The Yankee Clipper was a type of cargo sailing ship that gained fame and fortune in the mid to late nineteenth century.

You Can Negotiate Anything

Jim Johnson gives “You Can Negotiate Anything” five out of five butterflies.  

Your Brain at Work

Jim Johnson gives Your Brain at Work: Strategies for Overcoming Distractions, Regaining Focus, and Work Smarter All Day Long by David Rock a rating: 4 out of 5 butterflies.

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