The Art of Project Management: Expert advice from experienced project managers in Silicon Valley, and around the world
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Eldette Davie, Author at UCSC Extension in Silicon Valley

I started in the world of computers in 1984 by serendipitous chance. I have since filled various roles in this intriguing world and worked in what is considered the world’s leading consulting houses. My initial focus was principally technical which evolved into an application fascination. My roles have included large scale functional solution designs and implementations, as well as business, pre-sales and management consulting. I am intrigued by what makes people think, how they learn, what moves them to think and behave the way they do, how to define and model excellence, and what influences and motivates people to seek and reach personal excellence. This led me to investigate, read, then study human behaviour and how people can define and then model their aspirations of excellence. I believe that sustained success is rooted in harnessing the collaborative strength of real teams which work in an energising, focused and planned manner and that proper communication is the glue which keeps this together. I am considered the master of crucial conversations done with grace. I have worked locally and abroad leading and managing diverse cross-cultural as well as offshore and virtual teams so have acquired good negotiation and facilitation skills. The science of influence, motivation and behaviour as the root for good negotiation are key passions of mine. My current passion is about growing; others and myself to look inward, reach outward and surpass their aspirations and dreams. On a personal note, I am in awe of life and thrive on learning new things as well as being exposed to new concepts, cultures and ideas. I am intrigued by synchronicity, and the concept of world connectedness. I am passionate about all things outdoorsy—photography, nature, sport (the more extreme the better). I have a deep love for my family (especially my stunning four-footed children) and music you can listen to without going deaf. I can even hold a tune and tinkle the guitar myself. I love travel and seeing how the world at large lives. I dislike more than words could EVER express; injustice, dishonesty, thoughtlessness, and prejudice. I regularly go and play with the lion cubs that live in the sanctuary near me; I have also played with baby cheetah, leopard and even tiger cubs, and have got up close and personal with a baby Ellie and fairly close but not too close to a baby rhino, all awesome soul feeding stuff for me. I am a certified Master NLP practitioner, a Language and Behaviour profiling practitioner (LAB), Prince2 project manager, APMG change management practitioner; with industry certifications in Consumer Goods, Food & Beverage, Life Sciences, Electrical & Industrial.

No need for a conductor … really!

No need for a conductor ... really!

To conduct or not …! Following on from my concept of using analogies and stories to break bad news, here are more recent examples; incidentally these should be used with caution! I was told that I was being facetious when I first used these, but I think it got the point across. Many companies feel […]

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Fresh or sour?

Fresh or sour?

Can I honestly say I play Chess? In my earlier blog I introduced the concept of using stories to break project disasters to executives. I never took too much interest in chess as a child.  No let me rephrase that.  I was more outdoorsy – running around the hockey field, cycling, swimming or doing fencing and […]

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Explaining broken projects …

Explaining broken projects ...

Unfortunately from time to time we have projects that are not the “world according to project management”?  Sadly that’s not new.  What I often find more challenging than fixing the problem, is how to explain the broken project challenges to company executives and or non project management people.  In particular the executive that may have […]

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5). Thai..ke Thyme: Keeping the Carrot in mind!

5).  Thai..ke Thyme: Keeping the Carrot in mind!

From my earlier blogs you will know that tuk-tuks and I were not necessarily on the same page, book or even library! I wasn’t certain that we would get to the airport as we needed to, but as per Anton’s diagram – the right sized taxi arrived at the right time and we headed off to the […]

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4). Thai..ke Thyme: What is your work ethic?

4). Thai..ke Thyme: What is your work ethic?

From my earlier blogs you will remember that we were in Bangkok and that I hadn’t had great success with the tuk-tuk drive to who knows where. My sister and mom had decided to approach the situation differently. I instead took to the streets on my trusty feet. I knew how to put one foot in […]

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3). Thai..ke Thyme: Matching your needs?

3). Thai..ke Thyme: Matching your needs?

As I mentioned in my earlier blog – our family was having a holiday in Bangkok and we were learning to adjust to the new Thai culture. You may have also gathered from my last blog that getting our needs matched to the taxi / tuk-tuk driver’s needs was not easy to do. The following […]

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2). Thai..ke Thyme: Are you and your service provider on the same wavelength?

2).  Thai..ke Thyme: Are you and your service provider on the same wavelength?

As I mentioned in my earlier blog – my family were holidaying in Bangkok and learning to adjust to the new Thai culture. Bangkok is a busy confusing large city. You need motorised transport to get about, a taxi or a tuk-tuk. Thai people speak limited English (my Thai is nonexistent) yet they are eager […]

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1). Thai..ke Thyme: Project managing your R&R time

1).  Thai..ke Thyme: Project managing your R&R time

Sounds a bit of a contradiction doesn’t it? I mean project management is often a tad frenetic, so how do you project manage restful time? It occurred to me (maybe I’m a smidgen slow) this is exactly what makes for good R&R! My family live in different continents; hard because we are emotionally close although […]

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