Back to the drawing board

Synopsis: Adoption of suitable project management practices in the workplace can yield benefits over time. At a recent international sporting event, in between all the hype and excitement, the relaxed atmosphere allowed for a no-holes barred discussion to take place regarding office discontent. Two people employed in senior positions, IT and Marketing respectively deliberated on an issue that is not unfamiliar. “We (IT) built according their (marketing) needs and they okayed what we presented...
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RIP Ideas

An organization’s future prosperity is of course directly correlated to its ability to remain relevant in the market place.  As we all know, to remain competitive organizations need to both innovate and invest. They need to stay in tune with their customers, be aware of shifting trends or disruptions and maintain a level of situational awareness that supports effective decision-making.  Most organizations are aware of those basics and CEO’s make efforts to stay on top of them. The “value” creati...
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Make your Meeting Worth Having – 5 Tips to Connect with Your Audience

I recently watched a video on a study centered on improving productivity in the workplace. The top cited problems for work interruptions and lack of concentrated efforts toward producing results while at work were, Managers and Meetings. Upon reflecting on what I now call the M&M factor, I realized it is indeed quite accurate. When I think of going to a place to get some serious work done, I unfortunately do not think of the office and I’m not alone. Managers are one thing, and they have a j...
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Connecting for Success

Everywhere we go we are bombarded with messages and someone vying for our attention. Every advertisement, politician, family member, or friend, has a message and something to say to us and many ways in which to say it; email, text message, Facebook posts, tweets, magazine articles, on and on. Our world is cluttered with words. So, how do you as a leader or more importantly your team choose, which to tune in and which to tune out? As a project manager, you’re constantly tasked with getting you...
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Shifting the status quo

In Project Management circles there is an increasing awareness that some projects aren't just about producing deliverables, they are about delivering "change".  Project's in today's business world are often changing the way business is done and the failure to recognize how hard it can be to change work habits, or organizational structures, is one of the contributing factors seen in a number of the projects in the "Catalogue of Catastrophe". Many of the better Project Management courses in the...
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In the news – Project Management on the ascent

Project Management is a field that has experienced rapid growth in recent years.  Although the origins of Project Management lie in the field of construction, the value of Project Management is now being recognized by organizations throughout the economy. Recent data attained from a major Canada wide job posting website demonstrates that growth and shows how the ability to lead successful projects is becoming the must have skill organizations are now looking for.  The following data was attai...
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Project Management Heresy

I’ve just finished reading a book about the Apollo missions that put man on the moon (Apollo by Charles Murray and Catherine Cox). The Apollo project was initiated by President John F. Kennedy in 1961 when he announced to the US Congress his believe that the United States “should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the Moon and returning him back safely to the earth". In July 1969 that goal was achieved when Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin landed...
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Befuddle, Bewilder and Baffle

In the Project Management world, it’s a refrain that is repeated in almost every training program offered around the world; communicate, communicate, communicate. Despite the fact that students of Project Management are told that as much as 80% of a Project Manager’s time is spent communicating, in most Project Management training courses, as little as 5% of the time is dedicated to the topic of communications. Even then, most courses simply expose students to some basics ideas (such as the send...
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The Leadership Pendulum

One of the trends I’ve noticed over the years has been the growing importance of the Project Management role. When I first started work more than 20 years ago, many projects were lead by a Technical Leader rather than a Project Manager. Today most projects have a dedicated Project Manager. The change is likely a reflection of the fact that many past failures could be attributed to poor planning and control. While appointing a dedicated Project Manager has clear benefits, we need to be careful...
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