The Art of Project Management: Expert advice from experienced project managers in Silicon Valley, and around the world
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On Tattoos and Leadership – Part 2

On Tattoos and Leadership – Part 2

Hello. My name is Todd and I am a tattooaholic. Maybe if I had more taste I’d be a tattoo aficionado. In any case, I’ve been a fan since age nineteen. That very first tattoo seriously heightened my awareness of social norms. In one social context – a party with other young adults – the […]

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On Tattoos and Leadership – Part 1

On Tattoos and Leadership – Part 1

I used to be a walking contradiction. I was a professional who sported many tattoos. While the stigma still exists in the United States, it is fading fast. I am becoming normal. One in five people have ink in our country. It is a normal right of passage for many. We have multiple television programs […]

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Don’t Smoke the Newspaper

Don’t Smoke the Newspaper

One of the best pieces of advice I can give you regarding decision-making is to stand on your own two feet. Yes, there will be times you will find it strategically useful to defer to someone else’s view. Yes, there are times when you need to go along to get along. Fine, but most of […]

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The PM as saleperson?

The PM as saleperson?

I was recently working with some relatively young (well, pretty much everyone seems to be younger these days) software developers beginning to make a transition into project management.  As we were going over some of the PM responsibilities and tools, one of them asked, “A lot of this sounds like selling.  Don’t we want to […]

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The Project Culture Cunundrum

The Project Culture Cunundrum

The challenge of managing virtual projects is amplified by a complexity factor equal to the number of cultures represented on your team. When you start doing the computations based on the different cultures related to nationality, company, functional discipline, age and caste you can quickly realize why you and your peers heads are spinning when […]

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A PM’s Toolbox Tour: Tray 2

A PM's Toolbox Tour: Tray 2

The second tray of my toolbox has two compartments, one for key components of various project management methodologies/ approaches, and one for facilitation exercises.  The number of variables per project ensures that every project will be unique: a standard methodology does nothing to change this, though most do their best to control them (control change? […]

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A PM’s Toolbox Tour: Inside the Lid

A PM's Toolbox Tour: Inside the Lid

The first thing I see when I open my toolbox is the inside of the lid, so here’s where I post reminders of the things that will have the most overall effect on my work: my project management principles and mantra.  The project management principles define how my values are implemented on the job.  I […]

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The POO Code, Chapter Five

The POO Code, Chapter Five

The applause was thundering as the magician completed his performance. Proman A. Jecgert had hired the magician to help celebrate the completion of what would come to be called Phase One. The party included all participants across the organization. The grove in the trees was a perfect setting, and the sun shone brightly. Proman smiled […]

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The POO Code, Chapter Four

The POO Code, Chapter Four

The escalation process worked! As work on the program drifted past the scheduled completion date, Proman sensed the pressure coming from across the organization. Managers wanted their engineers back to work on product development, not on solving broad reaching technical issues. But the impasse was real. Development could not continue (or if it did it […]

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Breaking the Cycle of Micromanagement

Breaking the Cycle of Micromanagement

Does this sound familiar? Project Manager:  I thought I knew where we stood, but turns out we’re further behind than I thought.  This latest slip is going to have a domino effect.  I wish I had known earlier, when we could’ve done something about it! Task Owner: I don’t want to make a big deal […]

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More on “teamwork” – how individual team members’ knowing and doing makes the team

In a post last week I talked about “teamwork” not being a warm and fuzzy concept to me.   To me the concept of teamwork has meaning due only to a result a group of people produces due to their work together.   A well-functioning team that exhibits “good teamwork” is made up of individuals each taking personal responsibility for having an impact […]

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New Perspectives in Project Management From The Second Grade Playground: # 4 = What SHAPE Is Your Leadership In?

New Perspectives in Project Management From The Second Grade Playground: # 4 = What SHAPE Is Your Leadership In?

Welcome back everyone to blog # 4: your opportunity to look in the mirror to see what you see about having you lead, or work on, any project: and you had better see a leader or else you are going to see a follower and if you are follower, then you may be the one […]

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How to Kill a Project

It seems to me that too many High Tech companies have become so bureaucratic that the processes and meetings and inability to make decisions bog projects down unitl they die from boredom. I see meeting after meeting after meeting of people afraid to take risks and actually make working decisions.  Instead, everything is discussed ad-nausium.  […]

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