The Right Way to Ask a Quick Question

Hate being interrupted? Who doesn’t. The thing is: sometimes you need to interrupt others too. If you start off with, ‘I just got a quick question…,’ their proton shields shoot up. Defense mode activated. Getting the response you were hoping for slips away… ‘Yeah, I’ll get back to you’, isn’t good enough when you need […]

Give it to the Italians! Why Star Performers Can Undermine Your Team

In the comedy Kicking & Screaming, Will Ferrell, takes over a high school soccer team. With no experience or talent they get hammered game after game. But like all good managers, he doesn’t give up on his players. He encourages, motivates, and helps them all. Except they keep losing. Then, luck strikes. He finds two Italian […]

Project Manager’s Dilemma: Soft Deadlines v Hard Deadlines?

In the fairy tale, The Boy who cried Wolf, the villagers stopped believing the child. There was no wolf, they thought which was true until one day… The same thing occurs when you – or someone above you – creates an artificial deadline. I’m looking at a report that says we have a hard deadline […]

Eat a Frog v Getting Things Done

Not getting things done? I’m not a big fan of GTD or other productivity systems. Despite their good intentions, they seem to take more effort to setup and often an indirect impediment to starting on tasks. Maybe that’s just me. However, I do have a framework that helps me get started faster and wrap things […]

Is Trying Too Hard Counterproductive?

I finally have my first running injury. I overdid it and now cannot run for a few weeks. And while this is a bummer, I also feel slightly proud that I’ve managed to acquire a running injury, which is surely a sign that I’m trying hard, right? Maybe. Well, not really. The injury occurred because […]

The (real) purpose of meetings is

To remove obstacles. It’s not: to get status updates (that’s what status update reports are for), brainstorm ideas (that should be in workshops) or wait for others. The last one is important because it happens so often, we tend to get used to it. My approach to meetings changed after I stared working with a […]

To project manage or Not to project manage… that is the delta

Can you see Hamlet as a project manager? Try… Keep trying… Ok, let’s ignore that he was a prince, Danish, and saw ghosts, at least for a moment. In the play much is made of Hamlet’s indecision, wavering, procrastination, and dithering. What Hamlet knew about Project Management What’s often overlooked is how this must have […]

Project Managers – 17 Ways to Reduce Distractions

How many times a day do you get distracted? Here are some tactics to reduce the number of distractions so you have more time to focus on what matters most. The key is to blend these tactics into your working day as frequently as possible. Then refine what works best for you. 17 Ways to […]

A Project Management Tip from… General Norman Schwarzkopf

What can the military teach you about running a better business? General ‘Stormin’ Norman’ Schwarzkopf is probably one of the best known US military strategists in recent times. An analysis of how military leaders organize resources, champion team leads, and schedule conflicting priorities helps us organize our business on a smaller scale. What Business Managers […]

Why are ‘creative’ people so unproductive?

Why are creative people so difficult to manage? I think it’s because we manage others the way we’d want to be managed. And as most of us are not that creative, we don’t have much insight into how their methods. So, how do we get around this? Drummy The Problem With Managing Creative People Zoran […]

Project Managers – How to Increase Conflicting Priorities

Do you find you’ve too many conflicting priorities? One of the dilemmas for small business owners is that the more work you get, the more likely you are to prioritize more tasks. This leads to a schedule conflicts whereby you cannot complete deliverables on schedule, releases get pushed out, and staff become demoralized. How to […]

How to answer: “How can I help you be more effective?”

Did your boss ever ask you this question? One of the dilemmas for managers is the tendency to delegate down and avoid asking others for feedback, especially on how they can perform their job better. The risk in doing this is that you stop others from sharing what you need to hear; as a result, […]

How to Programme Your Projects

Every Project Director demands a crystal-clear plan for their project. How should you develop this programme? Should it be made in the same way each time? At what phase will dependencies, baselines and actuals be recorded? To show the answers to these usually asked questions, read on…

What Avatar Can Teach You About Project Management

What’s the one thing you enjoyed most in Avatar? For my Project Management friend is was the video logging. Did you notice that the team kept their reports not in Microsoft Word (i.e. on paper) but as video logs.

When trying it out, the protagonist in the movie couldn’t get a handle on it. ‘Don’t worry, you’ll soon get used to it’, was the reply. Well, it worked for them, could it work for you? Here are some of the reasons you might want to consider using video for project management activities.

5 High-Paying Careers for English Speaking Professionals in China

Many are worried that their jobs will be off-shored to India and China. You’re right. They will. But I see this as an opportunity rather than a setback. Here’s how you can take advantage of this right now.