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January 8, 2015
Being the PM Execs Call FIRST
Cinda Voegtli Being the PM They Want: What Executives Think Our 2015 Goals Should Be
by Cinda Voegtli

So here we are -- the start of a brand new year -- and, very possibly, already drowning in everything we need to get done. Let's hold on a sec! Before those task lists take over all our time, here is my New Year's wish for all of us: A little thinking time about what is MOST important for each of us to do and achieve -- to be maximally effective; to be maximally valued; and to ultimately have the best possible options for our careers.

Those who have followed me for a while or attended any of my classes know how critical I think it is that we pay attention to our internal customers' and stakeholders' perceptions of us -- and use them to guide our behaviors and actions and personal development. I am referring to those people in the organization that we are serving and affecting via the projects we run: the executive sponsor; functional managers whose people we need; outward-facing people trying to satisfy the company's external customers.

Many of those people are executive level. They control the budgets, resources, project assignments, promotions. And guess what, they do NOT necessarily see our project management work the way we do. They don't always value the same things we do. If I want to be MOST effective, and valued, and career-rewarded in 2015, it's imperative that I take into account how these people perceive me and my work, and whether they value what I am contributing. Their perception is the reality of how I'm seen, respected, and rewarded (or not).

So what do these people want from us? Here are examples of things I've heard from executives… Read More »

How "Successful" Projects Can Kill Companies
Kent McDonald The Project Was a Success, But the Business Went Bankrupt
by Kent McDonald

In Stand Back and Deliver, my friend and co-author Niel Nickolaisen shared the story of a 14-month, $27 million ERP project that was on time, on budget, delivered all the agreed upon scope, and was considered a complete failure. The project did not add features that helped the organization build and maintain a sustainable competitive advantage. The team and the sponsors thought that budget, cost, and scope were appropriate measures of success, when really they should have focused on whether what they were doing would help them achieve their business objectives. The comments [received after discussing this project] took some exception with my perspective on whether the project was successful. Read the rest »

Spotlight – Other Project Templates, Tools, and Techniques
Mini-Course: Agile Approaches to Lessons Learned
The Agile retrospective approach allows teams to realize what worked and what didn't and change their ways while there's still time to make a difference to their current project. This mini-course by Kent McDonald explains how to organize and run a project retrospective, and how you can take advantage of this approach even on traditional waterfall projects.

Special Template: Role Comparison Checklist: Executive Sponsor and Project Owner
This Premium resource is free to registered Members until January 22, 2015
This file contains a set of tables that outline and compare the roles of the Project Manager and the Executive Sponsor in a variety of critical areas such as goals definition, planning, communication, scope changes, stakeholder management, and more. Three tables are included: An overview table comparing the two roles in each area, and a table for each individual role to use as a checklist and worksheet for preparing your work during a particular project.
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 »

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