ProjectConnections  Newsletter
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May 1, 2014 In this edition:
There's more to changing behaviors in your team or your organization than issuing a new process memo. Behavior change often requires a change of focus as well as procedure. Instead of acting as a scold, try to catch people doing something right, as Carl Pritchard suggests in his column this week. If you're promoting a new philosophy, like Agile, take note of Brian Irwin's advice to be sure your words match your actions. And no matter what change you're trying to create, focus more on results than on processes. It's about being relevant, business-savvy, and connected with your teams and stakeholders.

» Wisdom, Perspective, & Advice
» Business-Savvy PM
» Achieving "Just Enough" PM
» Personal Power Tools!
» Say NO to Silos
» Project Templates Spotlight
» Premium How-To Course
» Where's ProjectConnections?
» Corporate Subscriptions

Don't Miss Out! PM Light™ Fast Ramp Closes Soon

PM Light Fast Ramp Are your management techniques practical and strong without being off-putting or overpowering? Do your teams resist any hint of process, and balk at any mention of project management? Do you wonder how to make all this supposedly important PM stuff actually work across radically different projects and teams? PM Light™ can help you figure out which tools and techniques make sense for bringing just enough project management to your teams. Seating is extremely limited! Fridays, May 9-June 27. 16 PDUs. Learn More »

Wisdom, Perspective, and Advice from the Field
Carl Pritchard The Definition of Sanity
by Alan Koch

In every industry, from IT to Marketing, from Finance to Public Sector, we see the insanity play out over and over again. As members of the project management community, we need to be the champions of sameness. We need to be the ones who celebrate things that work and herald those things as the moments of genius that they are. Rather than rail against a one-off failed user experience, we need to be the ones who sing from the mountaintops when there's a positive user outcome. Three creative approaches to promoting sanity in your organization »

Your lips say Agile, but your memos say "I'm in control!"
There's been a lot of talk recently about "scaling" agile practices for enterprise environments. Brian Irwin isn't so sure that's a great idea, or even one that's possible to achieve. To implement agile processes, your team needs an agile mindset. And so, by the way, do you. Brian challenges us to expand our horizons, and even provides a new mini-site where you can learn more about it. Read More »

Being a Business-Driven Business-Savvy PM (the kind Execs adore)
Information is power, so share it whenever you can – PREMIUM
The biggest mistake many people make is thinking that they can keep stakeholders and managers from being anxious if they just avoid talking about an issue. But if they don't hear about it from you, they'll hear about it from someone else. Trust us, they're already anxious. But information has incredible soothing powers, if you apply it correctly. This format helps you achieve the Goldilocks zone in issue status reporting.

Risk Strategy Selection Matrix Two-for-one risk management – SPECIAL
This Premium resource is free to registered Members until May 15, 2014
Why address one risk at a time, when you could hit two, or even three? Nothing says "business savvy" like getting more for less. The Risk Strategy Selection Matrix helps you all get a clear look at the most pervasive risks and identify which strategies have the best chance of resolving multiple risks at once.
Achieving "Just Enough" PM (Your team will thank you for it)
Status reports don't have to be painful – PREMIUM
It's fine to want your team to tell you what's going on. It's not fine to expect them to spend an hour a week doing that. These Team Member Status Report formats are designed to help you and them capture the information you actually need, in just a few minutes. Less writing for them, less reading for you, more information for everyone. By the way, when their report tells you they knocked one out of the park, follow Carl's excellent advice (above) and make sure everyone else knows about it too.
Personal Power Tools! (Grow critical strengths and keep your sanity, too!)
Didn't we discuss this in a meeting a few months ago? – MEMBER
We're not actually huge fans of minutes. Usually, they don't get read, and why write something no one will read? But if you do need to keep them, because of company policy or regulatory requirements, better that they're useful. Our Meeting Minutes Formats show you how. And if you don't need anything that formal, it shows you how to make sharp, concise, readable meeting notes (not "minutes") that will still be useful when you're trying to remember what happened at that meeting a few months down the road. This is one of those little tips that can have a huge impact on both current and future projects Ð think decision logs and lessons learned.
Say NO to Silos – Making the Functional-Project Matrix WORK!
Don't wait to get Ops involved!
Morley Selver concludes his most recent series with 7 more critical conversations you absolutely have to have with Operations if you want your project to run smoothly. Make sure your teams aren't missing any of these important milestones.

Requirements Interview Checklist Don't wait to get your SMEs involved, either – PREMIUM
That stakeholder or subject matter expert you plan to talk to "soon" may have information or requirements that could have a huge impact on your requirement. This requirements interview checklist is organized into sets of questions you should consider, plus important preparation that will increase your credibility and help you make the most of your time with these key resources. You really need to get this done.
Spotlight – Other Project Templates, Tools, and Techniques
  • When Management Isn't Buying - If you can't seem to explain the value of project management, demonstrate it. Try these proven techniques for convincing the different levels of executive management.

  • Top 10 Agile Myths Debunked - "We're going agile so we can develop software faster!" Maybe. But then, maybe not.

  • Business Analysis Fast Track - There's been a lot of talk about business analysis as a profession lately, especially following PMI's certification announcement. This Fast Track will help you understand the role, what skills are required to do it well, and how to build a career in this growing space.
Premium How-To Course
Agile Approaches to Status Meetings
Presented by Kent McDonald

What if you could get all the information you needed from a status meeting in just 15 minutes? Discover a different way of doing status meetings, using a popular Agile technique. If your team has adopted or is experimenting with Agile methods, stand-up meetings are likely a core part of your communication strategy. But even for traditional methodologies, this unique approach can help teams focus on the really important stuff and get back to work quickly. 1 PDU. Learn more »
Where's ProjectConnections?
Taking the PMP® Certification Exam soon? Carl Pritchard is conducting a prep class June 3-4 in Rockville, Maryland. His 2-day session walks you through everything you need to know to prepare for and pass your exam. Click here for more information and registration (PDF).

Randy Englund speaks at the PMI Madison (Wisconsin) chapter May 15 on "Everything I Wish I Knew About Project Management When Starting My Career..." Randy and co-author Alfonso Bucero present a four-day seminar on "Integrating People, Organizational and Technical Skills: the Complete Project Manager" in Orlando, Florida June 23-26 for PMI's MEGA SeminarsWorld. Register now with 20% discount code AB20, before registration closes.
Corporate Subscriptions and Licensing
Want your team members to have their own access to templates and how-to resources for their project work? Need to share documents and deliverables beyond your project team? We make it easier with affordable corporate subscriptions and licensing. Detailed information regarding corporate options is available online. Give your whole team, or even the entire organization, cost-effective access to our comprehensive online library of resources. You already know how helpful it's been for you. Now it's time to share with everyone else. Find out more »

Not sure if corporate terms apply to you? Check out our licensing terms at the top of our Terms of Service page, in refreshingly ordinary, everyday English.

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