January 23, 2014, Sponsored by RMC Project Management, Inc.
From the Editor
The theme of this week's newsletter resulted from a recent interview Cinda completed with a colleague, Jeanne Bradford of TCGen, a long-time practitioner and expert on what it really takes to achieve consistently high-performing project teams. Part of their hour-long discussion (to be published on ProjectConnections next month) centered on "what matters most" in the PM role, and the competing pressures PMs have to do the mechanics of schedules, actions etc., and handle all the real-world aspects such as people, constraints, and influencing. One of Jeanne's insightful quips was, "I mean really, would you rather have to tell your boss, Sorry, I didn't get those team meeting minutes out, or Sorry, I didn't ever manage to get a meaningful schedule commitment from function X?" So often, leadership actions are "what matters most." This week we share thoughts and examples of leadership in action on projects.
Plan Ahead: PM LightTM Fast Ramp
Get $100 off your PM LightTM Fast Ramp enrollment if you register by January 30! You won't want to miss out on this practical, results-oriented program. Here's what some of our November attendees had to say:
PM LightTM Fast Ramp focuses on "lightweight, just-enough" PM practices for project success. We stress fast fundamentals, practical tools, and situational application, using examples from real projects, and we bring out the business-focused leadership aspects of managing a project. You'll leave each virtual session with new tools and techniques you can use immediately, and you'll leave the series with a better understanding of your critical management and leadership role. Plus, 12 Category A PDUs, and all without a single day out of the office.
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Stop Writing Checks Others Can't Cash
Stop me if you've heard this one.
By Kent McDonald
The members of a delivery team were sitting in their team space a few weeks ago when their product owner, Phil, walked in.
"Hey guys, how are you doing?" Phil asked, stopping by the food table to check out the latest selection of chips and candies.
"Hey, Phil." "Pretty Good." "No complaints," came the various replies.
"Cool," nodded Phil grabbing a handful of tortilla chips. "By the way, I told Patricia with the CRM program that we'd have those TPS Reports done by next Friday."
Before you make promises about feature delivery, make sure you're not writing checks against someone else's account.
Kent McDonald discusses Promise Theory and delivery heroics »
Cinda's Musings on Things that Matter
Leadership and sponsorship: Two words that are loaded with assumed meanings and accepted as important on projects. But that doesn't mean they are consistently translated to action. What DO these things look like in action and what steps might we have to take to achieve them?
Pictures of leadership -- to interpret, translate, inspire
Are our sponsors acting as the LEADERS we need them to be?
Cinda's Bookshelf - High Altitude Leadership: (Highly recommended!) Practical leadership admonitions for tough project and organizational situations. Uses the author's extreme mountain climbing experiences to illustrate 8 "dangers" we must watch for and have the courage to tackle.
More resources on various aspects of project leadership
What does "Great PM leadership" look like? -- Thoughts on and examples of the leadership persona in project situations
Executive views on Great PMs -- Questions from an exec that freed up a PM to "do what made sense"
Speaking Truth to Power, Leading from the Middle -- Case study on speaking up in a "dangerous" situation
Speaking Up: How to Make Your Case -- Specific tips for making recommendations that cause action
On Being a PM I want to hire: STANDING UP for real release dates -- Story of a shy PM who spoke up anyway, took on emotional, unrealistic expectations, and won the day.
Premium How-To Course
Ten Agile Myths Debunked
Presented by Kent McDonald
This course addresses several popular beliefs about the advantages of moving to agile -- some of which aren't necessarily accurate! Understand what you will and won't get from using agile methodologies, so that everyone will have the proper expectations for whatever you decide to try. 1 PDU
Learn more »
Alfonso Bucero is leading a workshop in Dubai based on his excellent book with Randy Englund, The Complete Project Manager. The workshop covers critical PM soft skills and is a great opportunity to develop your professional career as a project manager. To be in Dubai on January 26-28, 2014, register at https://www.regonline.co.uk/builder/site/Default.aspx?EventID=1325885.
Corporate Subscriptions and Licensing
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