The Human Factor in Project Management…

The Human Factor Project Management…

Actually is a WONDERFUL class by Kevin Ciccotti, CPCC, ACC that I recently attended through the University of Nevada, Reno Extended Studies Program at their very nice Redfield Campus. I highly recommend this course for any project manager, no matter how seasoned you may be.

It has been a week now since I have finished the course and I am still finding value in my notes and the class materials as I review them. I have been doing project management for 20+ years, and have taken just about every personality, team building,  HR touchy feely class given for managers and non-managers. NONE have been as effective as this one.

You will have a much better approach for how to respond to people’s needs and still meet objectives, and truly understand that they are indeed not mutually exclusive. You will learn if you are truly fit to lead, and if not what you need to work on to get there and stay there.

You will not stay there without understanding what you really know about your emotions, where they come from and how to utilize them on a consistent basis. You will learn to recognize when you are being tempted to go for the short-term easily obtainable instead of the long-term sustainable, and change course effectively without sending your team into change panic.

It will make you a better project manger, and we all have room to imporve. To be the best we can be.


Project Risk

You know–Murphy’s Law and the chance of certain occurrences’ adversely affecting the project [phrase memorized by numerous PM training certification classes]. Everyone identifies these in the planning of their project, right? Well, they should.

However, all too often some never revisit their risks and end up with horribly derailed projects. Risks are not look once, log and move on things. They live and change with your project and need to be re-evaluated to ensure that the contingency plans that were made are still relevant and provide the necessary contingency.

One of the most critical times is during change activities. In the blur of the hurry to integrate the change, don’t forget to re-access the risk and the contingency plan(s).




Herding Cats

I find project managers are somewhat like cat herders.  They are trying to convince people who have competing priorities, egos, abilities, work styles, etc.; to pull together and do something for organizational good.

So how does one herd cats? Catnip, cheese, mice, and whatever else works. Not all cats are attracted to or driven by catnip. So how does this apply to people and your project? All the people working on your project are different and need to be treated thusly. You can’t succeed (at least not easily) if you treat them all the same.

You as the project manager must be fluid and adaptable. You must have many tools in your bag, the most important being good people skills. Joe likes not to be talked to for the first hour of his day, not even a good morning, so scheduling a project meeting with him before them…well you will not get his best. You may even get his worst.

Jill and Jim want to hear you say good morning and listen to what is going in their life—make time at the beginning, put it in the agenda as to limit the time for this. The bottom line is your project rests on people, they are not machines. Treat them well and they will perform.

I found this article interesting:  Share ‘Project Manager Challenge: Influencing in Lieu of Oompa-Loompas’

What do you think? How do you describe project people management?