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Coaching for Project Success

Coaching for Project Success
By Tom Ferguson

Project managers, are you playing the hero? Get off the stage and leave it to your team. Focus on giving them the limelight by developing and unleashing their collective passion, energy and creativity. Create inspiring visions with ambitious goals and dreams. Then act as coach to mine their hidden depths for possibilities, actions and solutions. Achieve the impossible in your projects.

Sounds too good to be true doesn’t it? The performance bar has been raised to new heights in the corporate world. Everyone is talking about change, reinvention and how we must be knowledge workers and learning organisations. Coaching is the new management. Many of the leading business corporations are putting executive coaching at the centre of their management practice.

They are attempting to develop the kind of leaders that will create the extraordinary organisations that will be necessary to compete tomorrow. Leaders at all levels are creating a new paradigm. Read the Complete Article

The Humble Flipchart – a Project Manager’s Best Friend

The Humble Flipchart – a Project Manager’s Best Friend
By Tom Ferguson

There can be many times during your project that you will need to workshop with your team to solve problems. The humble flipchart is a must-use tool in these circumstances as it provides a great platform for facilitation. This no-nonsense low tech tool doesn’t require any special training or skills and can be used by anyone who can write.

I just love the flip chart. It doesn’t need to be plugged in, rebooted, the lamp won’t blow and it doesn’t care about my laptop or its screen resolution. It can be used everywhere and anywhere and it can even be put on the table in the middle of all those brainstormers!

The flipchart can be a powerhouse and:

  • Provides focus for the team
  • Records and displays our thoughts so far
  • Communicates more than words and sometimes what words cannot
  • Invites participation and when participants see their ideas up there in print, this encourages even more and better participation
  • Leverages the diverse knowledge, skills and experiences in the team towards specific objectives
  • Captures the thoughts of all and not just your own
  • Provides a platform for all to refer to and work from
  • Verifies that all contributions have been accepted, understood and are of value
  • Allows fast forward and rewind back and forth to add to or reposition a particular point.
Read the Complete Article

Project Management Mind Games

Project Management Mind Games
By Tom Ferguson

As well as a written work contract, project team members will have also defined a psychological contract that will influence how they contribute to a project. The psychological contract consists of a set of mutual expectations that team members and Project Managers have about satisfying a set of mutual needs. It is part of the mind games of Project Management.

Team members will typically expect:

  • Safe working conditions
  • Fairness and respect
  • Equal work distribution
  • Clarity of role and responsibilities
  • Clarity in work assignments
  • Opportunities to develop
  • Participation in project decisions
  • Adequate rewards
  • Recognition for achievements

The Project Manager will typically expect:

  • Adherence to policies and procedures
  • Commitment, innovation, creativity
  • Team player
  • Maintenance of the organisation’s reputation
  • Trust, honesty and integrity

In a nutshell, it is a game of give and take – you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours. The psychological contract can have more influence over behaviour than any written contract or positional power or authority that the Project Manager or anyone else can bring to bear. Read the Complete Article

Forget About Feedback

Forget About Feedback
By Tom Ferguson

Project management is a tough job. Where else would you be expected to manage something that is temporary, has not been done before, is loosely defined, is constantly changing, is laden with complexity risk and unrealistic expectations and is set within fixed constraints including resources, budget, time, process, organisation and culture?

Projects depend very much on the team and teamwork. One of the fundamental roles of the project manager is to provide feedback to team members on their performance. Feedback is supposed to show someone the impact of their behaviour with a view to helping them improve performance in the future.

Many of us do not know how to do feedback properly. This is not surprising as we tend to get very little practice. It is very common for feedback to be given rarely or for it to be part of an annual performance review process. Read the Complete Article


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1 – A1 Enterprise 286 – Karl Fischer
2 – Aaron Sanders 287 – Kathlika Thomas
3 – Abdulla Alkuwaiti 288 – Katy Whitton
4 – Abhijat Saraswat 289 – Kay Wais
5 – Abhilash Gopi 290 – Kaz Young
6 – Adam Leggett 291 – Keith Custer
7 – Ade Miller 292 – Keith L.
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