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Free: PM FlashBlog ebook

PMFlashBlog ebbok cover-smlLooking for a bit of New Year inspiration to flush away those January blues? Look no further.

Get a free copy of the PM Flashblog ebook here today: no sign ups, no catch. What’s the PM Flashblog, I hear you ask?

Last year over 60 bloggers from around the world all published an article on their project management blogs at the same time – a flash mob for bloggers, if you like. We all wrote about the same subject: what project management means to us. The idea was conceived by Shim Marom from the QuantmLeap blog and the ebook was compiled by Allen Ruddock from ARRA PM. It was a great project to be part of (you can read my contribution online here) but trawling the internet looking at all the posts was quite timeconsuming, so it’s good to have them all as one handy ebook.

Download the PM FlashBlog ebook here.

And don’t say I never give you anything!

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Meet Laurel: A Very PMP Wedding

I have confessed before to planning my own wedding in Microsoft Project. I also interviewed a wedding planner for my first book, Project Management in the Real World, about fixed date projects. After all, a wedding is a project with an immovable end date. So I was delighted to discover a blog that blends project management and wedding planning – the ultimate convergence of two of my favourite things.

A Very PMP Wedding is the blog that Laurel Cagan is writing as she counts down to her wedding later this year. She has been documenting her experiences with wedding planning since last April, including change, requirements, planning and stakeholder management.

As any good project manager would do she has identified success criteria for the day. She calls them bliss factors and they include:

  • Wanting their guests to have a wonderful time
  • Looking beautiful
  • Not turning into a bridezilla
  • Achieving their dream day for their target budget
  • Being happy.

She even has a set of downloadable templates, so if you are planning your own wedding (or just fancy using a scope template with a wedding theme), you can use her documentation.

I remember what the last few months of preparing for my own wedding were like so I look forward to hearing how Laurel uses her project management skills to juggle managing all the different requirements in the run-up to the big day.

You can read her blog here.

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News roundup

I was interviewed recently by Pawel Brodzinski, who writes the great Software Project Management blog.  The interview was around project management approaches and forms part of a series he is running.  He actually asked really hard questions!  Read the interview here.

Wellingtone (the people who do the salary surveys but occasionally send out pointless reports) have relaunched their newsletter.

Intellect are running their annual pay survey again – please take a moment to complete the survey and let them have your views on equal pay, which is a hot topic at the moment what with the Equality Bill on its way.  You can see the results from the last two years on their website (choose the .pdf files from the right hand menu).

If you are in the US, Mexico or Canada and looking for PRINCE2 or ITIL manuals and other products from the OGC, then they shouldn’t take so long to reach you as they have in the past.  IT Governance have signed a deal with TSO to stock their products out of a US-based warehouse.  No more excuses not to do PRINCE2!

There’s a great event coming up (invite-only, I think, so you’ll have to read about it here if you’re not on the guest list).  Sponsored by Morgan Stanley and Bank of New York Mellon, over 200 senior Men and Women will get together at Cass Business School the day after I get back from my holiday to hear from Avivah Wittenberg-Cox and Alison Maitland, authors of the award winning book, Why Women Mean Business: Understanding the Emergence of our Next Economic Revolution.  Read my review of their book here.  Julie Gilbert, founder of Wolf, will also be speaking.

And finally, congratulations to Jesper from Copenhagen, Denmark, who wins a copy of Phil Simon’s Why New Systems Fail.  Jesper, your book is in the post!  Hope you enjoy it.

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Now in Spanish!

I’m pleased to say that I’ve begun a collaboration with Think Like a Project Manager, the blog from La Salle University in Barcelona.

I’d like to take the credit for doing the translations myself, but sadly my Spanish only extends to ordering churros and chocolate caliente.

The first piece that La Salle have chosen to translate is Gadget Etiquette, which is going to appear in two halves.  Read the first bit – in Spanish – here and keep an eye on the Think Like a Project Manager blog for other pieces by me!

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Should I Twitter?

I’ve not taken the step to Twitter yet, but I’m thinking about doing it.  Is it seriously worth it?  Advice welcome from people who tweet already!

In a bid to make it easier for you guys, I’ve added a Share This link to posts, so you can save, share, email and bookmark anything that takes your fancy.

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A blogging lunch

I had lunch today with Soma and her sister.  It’s Soma’s first trip to the UK and she has been out and about seeing the sites of London: Buckingham Palace, the parks, the London Eye, a river cruise – packing more tourist things into 10 days than I have in the 18 months I have lived here.  I think her sister was exhausted from it all.

Soma gave me some lovely placemats and a notebook from India and they both made me feel really important and made me sign “autographs”, which was a bit embarrassing!  When I was introduced to Andy Murray at the BPUG Congress last week, I was on the other side of that tongue-tied feeling.  Andy Murray, the lead author on PRINCE2:2009!  I am not worthy.

Seriously, one of the best things about Congress and other PM networking events is being able to meet people in person.  It was great to meet a fellow blogger in Soma (and another one of the UK blogging clan was there too: Patrick Mayfield).  So much of what we do is online conversation, and that is good, but it only goes so far.  I was surprised that after my presentation no one asked me whether I thought all this modern technology would replace face-to-face interaction.  I don’t think it will.  It’s a supplement to faciliate interaction where face-to-face isn’t possible or desirable for whatever reason.  It can be faster and more efficient, but for project work Web 2.0 tools like blogs and collaboration workspaces will never replace the human touch completely.

You can do a lot of things electronically, but you can’t share a jacket potato and a sandwich.

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How to communicate in virtual teams: Hungarian PMs speak

I was in Budapest last Thursday for a fleeting visit – I spoke at the PMI Hungary Chapter’s Art of Projects conference for International Project Management Day (see some photos from the event here). I gave a presentation on social media use in virtual teams and also ran a workshop on virtual meetings. My fellow… Continue Reading->

PMI Hungary’s Art of Projects Conference: the view from Budapest

Starting with the big image and going clockwise: The MOM Cultural Centre which hosted the conference Chapter Chair introducing the day The amazing round room View from the balcony over Budapest Traditional Hungarian snacks: apple and cherry strudels Endre, Project Manager of the Year, receiving his prize One of the tomobola winners collecting a copy… Continue Reading->

Giveaway: Supercommunicator

Earlier this year I reviewed Supercommunicator: Explaining The Complicated So Anyone Can Understand by Frank J. Pietrucha. Now I have a copy to give away. Use the contact form to get in touch with the phrase "I'm a supercommunicator" by Wednesday 12 November 2014 and I will enter you into the draw. Normal giveaway rules… Continue Reading->

Book review: Trust in Virtual Teams

Trust matters because it helps build a resilient project team. It helps get things done. Trusted team members not only do only what is asked, but what the project needs them to do, because they know that the project manager will trust their decisions and actions.  Trust is a shortcut to better working relationships and… Continue Reading->

The Mr Tumble Approach to Project Management (The Parent Project Month 20)

I said we’d never resort to television while Jack is still under 2, it’s not good for his development, language learning, he’s too young, blah blah blah. But we’ve soon found out that the gap between the end of his nap around 4pm and tea at 5.30pm is awful. So hello, Mr Tumble. You are… Continue Reading->

Better stakeholder engagement: Interview with Oana Krogh-Nielsen

Oana Krogh-Nielsen, Head of PMO for the National Electrification Program at Banedanmark, is speaking at Nordic Project Zone next week and I was lucky enough to catch up with her to ask about the amazing projects she is working on. Here’s what she had to say. Hello Oana! Let’s get started: can you explain your… Continue Reading->