Too Much of a Good Thing: Avoiding Unnecessary Over-Collaboration

21 November 2017
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Just because you’re able to collaborate with roles across your organization doesn’t mean that everyone’s word should carry the same gravity. Understanding the weight and point of view of each of your collaborators before you share your project is vital to your end goal’s success.

The Model T Ford Project: A “Model” for Product and Process Innovation

20 July 2017
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Up until the early 20th century the world viewed the automobile as a luxury item built for the elite of society.  Cars were complicated in their use and required a significant investment that the average person could not afford.  Then in 1908, Henry Ford introduced the Model T Ford that did not only revolutionize the world’s perspective on personal transportation for the masses but also re-invented the manufacturing process still applied over 100 years later.  Although we have seen improvements to his original process, with the development of lean manufacturing, JIT, Six Sigma, Kanban, and others, the core philosophy of […]

Managing Bottlenecks. Good Project Management is a lot like avoiding traffic

12 May 2017
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Living in one of Canada’s largest metropolitan areas, Montreal is infamous for its traffic jams caused by never ending construction and growing population.  In a recent report it confirmed that the typical Montrealer that has a 30 minute commute loses 92 hours a year to traffic. The reality of this loss is astronomical impacting businesses, the environment and in some cases health issues that result from increased stressed levels and the broadened carbon footprint.  Although strategies to mitigate traffic issues  exist, similar to the project management world, it only takes one unexpected change of event to occur and you will […]

The Power of Demand in Project Management

4 March 2017
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The other day I read an article on how Charlie Sheen set a new Guinness World record by reaching 1 million followers in the shortest amount of time.  With the power of technology, Sheen opened a Twitter account and hit the “1 million” milestone in 25 hours and 17 minutes.  My first thought was – it is amazing the incredible appetite people have to be connected to latest news covering their topic(s) of interest.  Although the Sheen example is an extreme scenario, it does provide insight into the cyclical nature of humanity and the dynamic between people’s wants and needs […]

Monitoring project costs. A penny saved is a penny earned. Or is it?

15 February 2017
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I recently read an article where it described the U.S. Mint’s challenge in producing pennies and nickels at a cost more than their actual value.  In 2011 it cost the US Mint 2.4 Cents to produce a penny and 11.2 cents for every nickel produced.  I guess the old adage “A penny saved is a penny earned” does not apply to the US Mint.  Ironically, every penny has put the Mint 1.4 pennies in the hole.

Managing Your Project Pipeline vs Your Resources

1 February 2016
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project pipeline

Winning a new project is exciting for any business. But it usually doesn’t take very long for the feeling or triumph to be taken over by the realization that more work means a greater challenge for resource management and the evaluation of how realistic it is to complete this project on time – if at all. The assessment is a delicate balance of how you will reshuffle your pool of resources to accommodate this new endeavor, which could possibly delay, cancel or compromise some of your ongoing projects. Questions to be asked include: Should your company hire additional consultants or […]

Learning Fast & Failing Forward

29 June 2015
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fail

While many organizations and PMOs are realizing that “failing fast” is a smart approach, New Product Development (NPD) has been doing this for years, and doing it successfully. They refer to the process as Stage Gate, where ideas are turned into products; to sum it up the stages are “Activities” + “Analysis” = “Deliverables”. The reason that NPD has adopted this practice is that engagement levels and investments (both monetary and time-wise) are so high in product development, that they need to fail & learn fast before going too far – otherwise the loss would simply be too high. So […]

Project Managers Beware! It can take less than a minute to kill your entire project

6 April 2015
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In a world where overnight fame or infamy can happen to anyone with a webcam and internet connection, more than ever project managers need to carefully design a communication and collaboration strategy that will positively impact their projects while preventing the damaging effects of a potential negative broadcasting of information that can instantly shut them down at a moments notice.  Social media can  be used as a powerful tool to help drive a project quickly to success. Leveraging Twitter-like functionality and social collaboration can help quickly move your project by instantly shoring up the necessary support from your stakeholders to […]

When did a Plan stop being a Plan? Not Sure? Blame the iPhone!

14 March 2014
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I remember a simpler time when someone asked to use the telephone you knew it was to actually make a phone call.  Today, when you see kids begging their parents to use their “Phone” 99% of the time it’s to play video games.  In the last 7 years, the “Phone” has been redefined as an all purpose device ranging from communication via voice, text, SMS and email to browsing the web, taking photos/videos, listening to music and watching YouTube.  Today’s phone’s are mobile computers keeping you connected and entertained on the go.  Although smart phone technology has been available since […]

Good Project Managers “Don’t play the odds, they play the man.”

7 January 2014
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I recently got hooked on to the TV show “Suits.” Set at a tier-one Manhattan law firm Pearson Hardman, the series centers around Harvey Specter (the firms  “Closer”) and his prodigy associate Mike Ross (the College drop out with a photographic memory) power brokering under the leadership of Jessica Pearson.  The show not only draws you into the high pressure lifestyle of well-dressed attorneys, but provides an interesting glimpse into the genius minds of professionals that deliver superior results by demonstrating the importance of effectively leveraging stakeholders to win cases and improve their position in the firm they serve.  The […]