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 […]

Sun Tzu and the Art of Project Management Part 1: The Essentials

26 August 2014
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It’s been referred to as one of the most timeless pieces of military literature ever written and can be found in both the Military History AND Business section of many bookstores. It’s been directly alluded to in both movies and television series, including Wall Street, where it was touted as the corporate raider’s bible and The Sopranos, where Tony himself uses some of Sun Tzu’s principles to better manage his “other family”. Some even go as far as saying that it was the inspiration behind Georges Lucas’ concept of “The Force” in Star Wars. But can the principles found in […]

The International Space Station Project: Where no project manager has gone before

25 April 2014
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Any one of the seven wonders of the world can claim the title of most famous project on our planet, however probably the most famous project out of this world would be the International Space Station (ISS).  Although to be honest with you, there is not much competition beside the many orbiting satellites and their space junk friends which can qualify as potential candidates.  The ISS completion is a true example of an international project in which the vision, execution and outcome has evolved as the needs and wants of the many stakeholders involved has changed over time. The IIS […]

The 2014 Sochi Olympic Project: The prize of gold had gone up!

14 February 2014
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As we are in the thick of it following our favorite athletes grace the Olympic stage and podium at the 2014 Sochi Olympics, I’m always amazed at the enormity, sweat equity, planning and cost that result in the Winter Games capturing the world’s attention every four years.  From a project manager’s point of view each and every Olympic project has become an amazing case study in what works and fails in planning and managing large-scale projects, and nothing remains more true in this statement than with these current games in Sochi.

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 […]

Project managers need to stop treating their plans like Turducken!

29 November 2013
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When you think of  the perfect Thanksgiving dinner, it cannot exist without a turkey dinner cooked to perfection.  By no means a simple bird to cook.  The perfectly cooked turkey requires the careful care in its seasoning, basting and carving.   However a perfectly cooked turducken will take your culinary expertise to the next level! For those who are unfamiliar with a turducken dinner, it’s the ultimate bird dinner combination in which a duck is stuffed with a chicken, then the duck is stuffed in a turkey and then carefully cooked so that each unique poultry and its flavours together deliver […]

New Orleans, host city to PMI Congress 2013, can teach you a trick or two in the value unified goals can bring to successful projects

18 November 2013
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This year’s Project Management Institute (PMI) Congress was hosted in the “Big Easy” combining highly informative sessions and thought leadership in project management along with the party atmosphere the City of New Orleans is famous for.  As it was my first trip to New Orleans it quickly became apparent to me that the city’s economy is highly dependent on tourism with Mardi Gras at the center of it all.

Beating the “Cat in the Hat” project syndrome. How to get Thing 1 and Thing 2 back in their box

30 August 2013
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It is not uncommon for project managers to experience their project’s trajectory to suddenly shift from being on the right track to getting turned on its head.  The manner in which project managers handle negative change sets the good leaders apart from those that crack under pressure.  Most project managers can master the techniques that help plan schedules, load resources and track costs.  Where many fall is in the area of managing change and the ability to effectively communicate and reset expectations to help move a derailed project back on track.  Succeeding in this respect requires real-life experience and natural […]

Do you want to hop on the Hyperloop? A trip with the Jetsons may not be as quick as Musk suggests

16 August 2013
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Famous technologist and billionaire Elon Musk (co-founder of PayPal) has recently promoted his idea of changing the landscape of travel with his futuristic Hyperloop concept that suggests that for the fraction of the cost ($6 Billion) than the current railway project in California his solution will deliver commuters to their destinations in half the time of commercial flights.  The idea is to build a “Jetsons-like” tubular route in which passengers of six would be launched every 30 seconds in enclosed aluminium pods travelling supersonic speeds to their destination. Although it all sounds a bit unreal, most of the technology he […]

How Google’s project will take collaboration to new heights with a lot of hot air

26 July 2013
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When it comes to project management you can never have too much collaboration.  Especially in today’s business climate where it is not uncommon for project teams to be dispersed around the globe.  In some cases, in which project teams are challenged by environmental factors and remote locations (e.g. mining or oil drilling projects) connecting has always been an issue and a pricey proposition by leveraging expensive satellite technology.  That being said, Google recently revealed its “Project Loon” in collaboration with Raven Industries known for being the leader in space  balloon technology recently popularized by the famous space jump by Austrian dare […]