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The Stench of Arrogance

I had just closed my third project for the month of May.  The team was efficient and quick with their tasks.  I sent congratulatory emails to the team and to their line managers.  Emails from senior management commending the team for their hard work were coming in – but something wasn’t right.

There was arrogance on the team.  It started before the project got into full swing.  Well-deserved pride for a job well done is completely acceptable.  This arrogance was different.  It felt…


Added by Dan Vickers on February 11, 2011 at 5:49pm — 6 Comments

Project Management Trend: Turning Change from “Roadblock” to “Gateway”

To quote Albert Einstein, “the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”


So why do we continue to hear statistics about how many projects come in late and over-budget? Why is that so many organizations continue to rely on traditional project management methodologies and tools but still expect fewer project failures? The key is embracing that “managing change” IS…


Added by Liz Pearce on February 11, 2011 at 12:26pm — 1 Comment

Risky Business – Just how bad is it?

In my last article on risk, I introduced how to get started with project risk management through risk planning and identification.  In this article we’ll discuss how to evaluate and prioritize those risks for action through qualitative and quantitative risk assessment.

Qualitative Analysis: During risk identification, the focus was on quantity – identifying as many as possible.  But not all the risks identified merit action.  The purpose of qualitative assessment is to…


Added by Cindy Vandersleen on February 9, 2011 at 8:23pm — 1 Comment

What is your preferred units of task estimation?

In the past I have always had my team members give me their estimates in hours.




I find getting my estimates in hours gives the ability to keep a closer eye on not only what my team members are handling but spot their weakness (for e.g. they need more time to grasp new technologies, they are weak when it comes to dealing with .NET framework, etc) and quickly spot when we are going behind schedule. I have also found this level of granularity to be very…


Added by Safinaaz Rawji on February 10, 2011 at 3:01am — 5 Comments

Do You Have a Personal Board of Advisors? Should You?

After 25 years of running projects and 14 years of teaching people about project management, there is one trait that I have found in every successful project manager – they know what they don’t know.

Project managers, new to the career, try to show that they know it all, they can handle it all and they can get it all done.

Experienced project managers have figured out that that isn’t true.

I propose the next step in your career development may be to develop a personal…


Added by Doug Boebinger, PMP on February 8, 2011 at 9:54pm — No Comments

The Adventures of Dan the Project Manager Man - Turning Proactive into Active

I reviewed my portfolio for the third time this week.  All of my projects appeared to be in order.  I was ready for the weekly PMO call.

A number of my projects were in the closing stages and not many new projects were in the pipeline.  I began to think of ways to ease the pain of managing multiple projects.  When a crisis is in full gear it is easy to fill every minute of every day and still feel overwhelmed and behind schedule.  However, when the crisis is over and projects are…


Added by Dan Vickers on February 8, 2011 at 10:36am — 1 Comment

Undercover Project Manager

Maybe you have seen the TV show titled “Undercover Boss.”  If not, let me give you a little background.  The concept is that CEO’s of major corporations, sitting behind their big desks, seeing the world thru spreadsheets and Powerpoint presentations, have lost touch with the working person.  So the CEO goes undercover in his/her own company as an entry level employee working with other people from the company.


Inevitably, the CEO learns that the employees are real people with…


Added by Doug Boebinger, PMP on January 31, 2011 at 4:06pm — No Comments

Woes of Project Management

Working on a technical project with individuals who have a far better grasp with the technology than yourself, but lack communication skill is tough! Working with individuals who are very bright and have an attitude to go with is even worse!


In university, I was fortunate to work with individuals who were almost the same level as myself when it comes to technical compitance. Heck it was great when I was done my part of the project early and I would take over some of their…


Added by Safinaaz Rawji on January 31, 2011 at 10:25pm — 3 Comments

A taxonomy problem in project management

Project management according to PMI is the application of knowledge, skills, tools and techniques to project tasks to meet the project requirements. It is made up of a set of activities which can be grouped in five areas:


  1. Initiating
  2. Planning
  3. Executing
  4. Monitoring and Controlling
  5. Closing


Different applications can be used to help to carry out the activities above and they are…


Added by Javier Morán Rúa on January 26, 2011 at 3:30pm — No Comments

5 Strategies for Dealing with Project Management Chaos

If you’re a Type-A personality like me, it probably drives you nuts to have an overflowing inbox, un-listened to voicemail messages,  or – worst of all – a messy project management system. It’s in our nature to try to restore order where there is disorder, to straighten where there is a mess. (Some people are comfortable with clutter, of course, but I’m pretty sure we’re two different species.)


Just like in your home, keeping your shared project management system orderly and…


Added by Liz Pearce on January 24, 2011 at 2:59pm — 2 Comments

5 Tips on Leveraging Body Language at Work

Interpreting and utilizing body language is an invaluable tool in any situation, especially at work.  From an interview to your everyday job, the following will provide you with tips to help you stand out from the crowd.


1.    30 Second Rule:  A judgment has…


Added by Bernardo Tirado, PMP on January 20, 2011 at 9:23pm — No Comments

The Adventures of Dan the Project Manager Man - Delegation Dilemma

I was having a stressful day.  My project portfolio was bulging, my calendar was full, and the team was looking to me for direction.  I had task lists for this project and for that project and for the projects over there.  I was beginning to feel overwhelmed.  I needed some help with my tasks.  But where do I begin?  How do I get someone up to speed quickly and then turn the tasks over to them?  Could they do a good job with these tasks?

I wanted to do all of the tasks.  I didn’t want…


Added by Dan Vickers on January 19, 2011 at 10:40pm — 2 Comments

Agile Will Be Seen for What It Is…and Isn’t

A new year is here and one of the top trends for 2011 will continue to be where Agile project management is going.

In a recent blog post by Bernardo Tirado his top trends in project management for 2011 includes a statement about Agile software development:…


Added by Ryan Endres on January 17, 2011 at 1:22pm — 5 Comments

Getting the Most Out of Your New Product Development Projects

From R&D to post-sales customer service, every group in an organization is critical to a new product’s success. Project and Portfolio Management (PPM) systems can unite all these elements that drive new product development – if used wisely.


But too many organizations run their new product development projects in silos, typically within the confines of marketing and engineering. PPM is used more as a tactical tool to monitor progress, overcome bottlenecks and keep on…


Added by Neil Stolovitsky on January 14, 2011 at 3:16pm — No Comments

The Adventures of Dan the Project Manager Man - Managing Team Conflict

“I won’t work with Jocelyn on this project.  You have to find someone else!”

“Okay, Dora.  I will think about what can be done.”

I frankly didn’t understand the reasons for the dislike between Dora and Jocelyn.  They are both very smart, very determined to do their best for the client, and very capable of delivering a quality product and service.  Personally, I felt their dislikes were rather unprofessional.  Professionally, I had to find a workable solution without dismissing…


Added by Dan Vickers on January 14, 2011 at 10:47am — 2 Comments

Top 10 Project Management Trends for 2011

ESI International, the world’s leading project management learning company, revealed their Top 10 Global Project Management Trends for 2011. Key themes include building the project manager’s (PM) influence, accelerating new leadership and communication skills, and increased use of informal learning…


Added by Bernardo Tirado, PMP on January 13, 2011 at 7:42pm — 3 Comments

Risky Business – Getting Started with Risk Management

In our last post, Susan discussed the top project management stories of 2010, and in that article concluded that risk planning was one of the major take away lessons of the year.  When we look to past news-worthy project stories such as the BP oil spill disaster, the Carnival cruise ship Splendor nightmare, or the delays of the Broadway production of Spiderman, risk…


Added by Cindy Vandersleen on January 12, 2011 at 3:55pm — 1 Comment

Project Management Shortcuts: Resource Leveling Made Easy

For project managers, a key mission is to ensure that all project team members are assigned the right tasks – and the right amount of work – given their availability. That means if someone is only available 8 hours a day, then the project schedule should only reflect (at most) 8 hours of work on that person each day.  

But with most project scheduling software, it is frighteningly easy to create schedules with overloaded resources. Take this Microsoft Project Gantt Chart, for…


Added by Liz Pearce on January 13, 2011 at 1:00am — No Comments

Top Project Management Stories of 2010

Here is my list of the big project management stories of 2010 and what lessons they offer for project managers.  At a glance, I think risk planning and perseverance are the take-aways.   And there are only 8 stories - project managers are all about efficiency, right?

1.  March 23 – Passage of the Healthcare Bill, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.  Regardless of what your opinion is on this legislation, the project of getting it passed was successful, and achieved…


Added by Susan Lyle Dodia on December 31, 2010 at 10:41am — No Comments

What Difference do Differences Make?


You have worked side-by-side with your team for quite some time and the good news is that it has been truly enjoyable. You get along, you work hard together and you laugh hard together. Lucky you, this might even be an example of a high performing team. You assumed it was because you had so much in common.


Then one day the inevitable occurred. The conversation turned toward religion or politics or some other high stakes topic. You were not too concerned. After all,…


Added by Margaret Meloni on December 20, 2010 at 1:35pm — 2 Comments

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