Monthly Archives: December 2008

PM Feedback Requested: PMBOK 4th Edition

The Fourth Edition of the PMBOK(R) Guide comes out today. 

Rich Maltzman, PMP from Scope Crepeis taking a poll on the LinkedIn Project Management Bloggers group for PMs and would like to know if you *care* about this, and your reasons for caring or not.

Using the following scale:

1. Exhilarated, Overjoyed
2. Excited, Very Interested
3. Mildly interested
4. Passing interest
5. Doesn’t mean anything to me

…please provide your rating number and a very quick rationale as to why you chose that number. Do you refer to the PMBOK Guide often? Are you using it to study for the PMP Exam and wonder how the test changes?

My response is # 2: Excited, Very Interested.  I have been studying the third edition to take my PMP exam in FEB 2010 with Cornelius Fichtner’s awesome Project Management PrepCast.  I am “nervously excited” to see how much rework I will need to do to catch up for the new version. I hope I don’t have to do what Yoda says and “unlearn what I have learned”!

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Filed under Business, Project Management

An “A-HA Moment” In Project Management

I recently completed a project that solved a problem that no longer exists due to the current economic times.  Many times I look at risks around the project completing on time, schedule, and on budget.  Never have I looked at the risks to the organization if the project is a success.   

Barry Shore, PhD. wrote a few articles  which reinforce my developing belief we need to keep assessing the client need for the product of our project.  The articles are: NO ONE WANTS TO KILL A PROJECT, What We Learn from Case Studies, and Why It’s So Hard to Pull the Plug on a Failing Project.  This last article hit close to home since I am a continuous improvement project manager:

How many times have I heard the mantra of “continuous improvement” not only to keep hope alive for the Red Sox but to keep projects alive? How many times have project managers wanted more time to turn things around? How many times have they asked for more time to give their improvements a chance to show results!

I discovered Dr. Shore from his amazing article for the PMI Member Project Management Journal: Systematic biases and culture in project failures.

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Filed under Business, Communication, Improvements, Learn Leadership, PM Risks, Project Management, Reflection, Waste

A Toyoda Set To Lead Toyota Again?

Our Lean benchmark, Toyota, may see President Katsuaki Watanabe step down and Akio Toyoda rise up to lead the company started by his grandfather.  See the AP article on msnbc.

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Filed under Business, Improve With Lean, Learn Leadership

I am still alive…Really!

I apologize for the lack of posts recently.  This has not been due to lack of ideas.  I am brimming with a bunch of posts that I will get written soon.  Sue to snow in Seattle and a couple of big projects being launched with full audits, my free time has been limited.  I will get something new this week, so keep checking in! 

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Lean Improvements and Data

I write a weekly RELENLESS HANSEI topic on my desk whiteboard and was looking through Liker’s The Toyota Way for a possible topic.  On page 261 I came across a powerful message:

“We discovered the top management in the companies with vital programs had process orientation, while the unsuccessful companies had results-oriented managers.  The results-orientated managers immediately wanted to measure bottom-line results of the continuous improvement program.  The process-oriented managers were more patient, believing that an investment in the people and the process would lead to the results they desired.”

This passage came from the section on the role of metrics.  This made me reflect on the harmonies of organizational culture.  If you speak about investment in people or lean improvements but measure hard results, the potential to be out of sync is high. 

When organizations are results-orientated, the potential for bad data exists also.  I have seen where correlation and causality get confused to be able to report results.  Results-oriented metrics can get murky for medical publications as well.

What are your thoughts?

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Filed under Improve With Lean

When Visual Systems Go Bad

Check out this airport sign.  Sometimes visual systems get put up without thorough thinking and can cause even more waste!

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Filed under Visual Systems, Waste

One Year Old

I can’t believe it.  Improve With Me celebrated its first birthday on 12/06/08.  I have learned a lot while blogging and appreciate all of my readers and those who have linked to my site from theirs.  I thank every one of you who stop by to check out my little blog.

This year has been fun since I have been learning more about lean and strengthening my project management skills.  I always approach learning as though I would need to teach someone what I am being taught.  Sharing my learnings with all of you has been a joy.

Here are my top three viewed posts:

Here is my least viewed post:

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In event all week – slow posts

I will be slow with posts this week due to being in an improvement event.  Thank you for your patience.

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Filed under Improve With Lean