Focus on Outcomes

Traction Tips

A weekly action idea to improve traction on your important initiatives by Stephen Wise.

 

The new and wonderful musical, An American in Paris, is doing the rounds. It weaves multiple love stories with a Jazz and Ballet fusion leading to true love outcomes.

Milo falls for Jerry, who’s in love with Lise, who is engaged to Henri. Lise shares mutual affection with Henri but falls in love with Jerry. Jerry’s friend Adam is also falling for Lise. Lise the ballerina, is oblivious she is the focal point of all the story lines. Despite the complications, true love wins out in the end.

In the opening scenes of the musical Jerry sets his strategy to find and win Lise. However he gets lost, becomes indecisive, and is distracted by other interests.

Has this ever happened to you in business? Getting lost in the details, uncertainty over the correct next step, or being distracted by new opportunities schweizer-apotheke.de?

Unfortunately, I see it every day.

So, here is my guaranteed formula for success.

1. Focus on driving the outcomes
2. Accept Uncertainty
3. Agile Mindset

Focus on outcomes

Craft a hi-level plan. List the activities required to achieve the desired outcomes.

Accept Uncertainty

Accept uncertainty. Our ability to achieve goals proscribed in the plan can vary significantly.

Agile Mindset

Re-work your plan frequently.  Consider changes in the environment and your leanings along the way. Switch around your priorities. re-evaluate desired outcomes to reflect new realities.

Weekly Traction Action

Fuse the improvisation of Jazz with the perfection of Ballet to manage your corporate outcomes.

Your weekly action:

1. Ensure all your desired outcomes have an accessible, hi-level, end to end plan.
2. Schedule regular times to evaluate whether you are on track and make course corrections to get back on track.

I recommend or implement these actions all the time on client initiatives. Hopefully, it will work to improve outcomes for you too.

I love Email

Please send me an email and tell me about if you have success or trouble with this action. I’m always interested to see what can happen out in the wild.

 

Stephen Wise

Integration Professionals

https://IntegrationProfessionals.com

Race to Resilience

Traction Tips

A weekly action idea to improve traction on your important initiatives by Stephen Wise.

 

Has it ever happened that your adequate plan takes a wrong turn and just keeps getting worse with every move you make? It is critical to under stand the concept of Resilience so that you have built up your resilience muscles in advance.

Heading to the Airport

We left for Pearson airport right on schedule. It was about 5am, cold and clear. The trip would take about 20 minutes. The international flight was in 3 hours – I was heading for a long planned vacation in Aruba.

My daughter was my driver and she would drop me off and return home with the car.

Change of Plan

On the way she mentioned she was worried the car was low on gas.

Waze

We took the nearest exit on the 401 where I knew a gas station would be nearby. While filling up I turned to the navigation app Waze for help to help get back to the airport. I wasn’t familiar with the area but Pearson is pretty big place; an airport should be hard to miss.

Waze instantly computed a route and declared 31 minutes to destination. The detour was going to be a lot longer than anticipated, and I was suddenly annoyed with myself, “Bad decision to get unnecessary gas when the most important thing was to get to the airport on time”, I was thinking.

Wrong Turn

We turned left, left again and then another right and so on. Eventually Waze declared Mission Accomplished right on scheduled time indipill.com/. I peered out in the dark and nothing was familiar. There were no strings of lights from other arriving and departing cars, no familiar airport way-finding signage nothing.

Waze had delivered us to the service entrance at the back of the airport.

At that point, speed limits became speed suggestions, and I raced to re-trace our path, get back on the 401, and re-enter the proper Pearson departure queue. Once back at arrivals, I lept out of the car.

Arrivals

A very friendly Air Canada rep radioed the gate and ensured my bag was accepted after the cutoff. The sprint through security and customs was heart pounding but successful.

Eventually, I took off for Aruba and it was everything people say about it.

Recovery

When you enter stressful events how do you react?

Do you cope as best you can and then collapse? There is a better way.

I learned from Richard Citrin, an expert in Resilience, that the right approach is to expect stressful situations to occur and prepare in advance to navigate through them and recover.

Resilience

When you are planning your next task, remember to build in enough time for reality. Also, prioritize so that you do the most important things first.

 

Thanks for reading. Subscribe to my newsletter for more traction tips at www.IntegrationProfessionals.com

Stephen D Wise

7 things to carry in your Project kit

Here are 7 things to keep on your person or nearby that will help you excel as a Project Manager.

1. White Board markers
A magic device that propels a conversation and creates a record acheter viagra en ligne.

2. Wristwatch
Place a wristwatch in front of you so you can keep your eye on the time so that the important items get covered and you end meetings on schedule.

Integration Professionals Project Kit
Integration Professionals Project Kit

3. 2 kinds of Pain reliever – ASA and Ibuprofin
Make a drawer in your desk available for your project team with necessities. Learned this one from a wedding planner. Could also include stain remover, candies, taxi chits.

4. Project contact list with email, phone, and mobile contacts
Missing a team member?, late for a meeting?, need urgent help from an executive? – always carry a printout of your contact list with email and phone info.

5. Project Issue / Risk log , Schedule, Change Log, and Budget Summary
Some people like to carry around a complete Project binder. I’ve boiled it down to a few key items that I update periodically – the purpose to have written notes to be able to give unplanned “hallway” updates if you bump into an important stakeholder.

6. Post-it notes and Black Sharpie markers
See number one above and add steroids. Get all meeting participants working on a plan, issue, or risk concurrently, if appropriate. Keep one idea per note. Print in large block letters. Post on wall and re-arrange to suit. Use a camera phone to snap the results.

7. Coffee-cards for instant recognition
Giving out $5 coffee cards just to recognize folks for attending a meeting smacks of desperation – but it is still appreciated.

What items should be added to the list? Add your ideas by replying below.

 

Stephen Wise

http://www.IntegrationProfessionals.com/

The most powerful leadership skill an expert Project Manager needs for success

No one can be an expert in all fields. A Project Manager is a skilled expert on leading teams to initiate, plan, execute and close projects. These are among the most important skills, but not the most powerful.

If you aren’t feeling well you go to see your General Practitioner (GP). Your GP understands the big picture and upon identifying a specific issue or risk with your health may refer you to a specialist. In this analogy the GP is like a Project Manager – they do not need to be an expert in every field and one difference between okay GP’s and excellent GP’s is the speed and quality and follow-up related to the referral.

All Project Managers will tell you that the most commonly used skill on a project is communication. However, neither communication nor planning are the most powerful skills in the arsenal. The true multiplier, the most powerful skill, is the ability to learn from others.

The ability to learn from others enables the PM to absorb the nuances of the culture, mitigate the hidden risks of the processes, and allow for the complexity of the technology. When a diverse project team gets together it doesn’t matter who is the smartest or most senior in the room. What matters is learning from everyone’s skills and experience and channeling that back to the team so the whole is greater than the sum. The most powerful leadership skill is the ability to apply the greater whole in order to reach the objectives of the project quicker and with less risk of failure.

5 Secrets of Successfully Implementing Strategy

It is common to find a cultural divide between the strategy folks and the implementation folks inside an organization.

As comparison, Strategy thinking is intellectual. Strategy development is sophisticated and often done off-site by executives. A completed Strategy is polished and presented by the top executives. The Strategy is locked for the year.

And, Implementation thinking is practical. Plan development messy and done by managers. Planning assumes that all the tasks and dependencies can be identified and solved. The plan will change every day based on progress and issues that occur manlig-halsa.se.

Strategy Execution Success
Strategy-Execution-Success

How can the organization ensure the outcomes from the implementation meet the needs of the strategy?

  1. The Strategists include the implementers in the strategy development process.
  2. One of the strategists assumes accountability for the successful initiation, planning, execution, and closure of each of the plans as well as active involvement in selected risk mitigation and issue resolution.
  3. The implementers ensure that a business case is provided that links the forecast benefits and risks of the strategy to the forecast resources and constraints. Viability of the business case should be validated periodically during and after implementation.
  4. The implementers select appropriate tools and methodology to plan and execute the detailed tasks necessary to achieve the plan.
  5. The implementers ensure the accountable strategist is aware of progress and risks and engaged for collaboration and assistance on all unresolved issues.

Increased collaboration between Strategists and Implementers is low-hanging fruit for improving outcomes. Leaders among the strategists and leaders among the implementers who reach across to each other and increase their mutual overlap will see desired outcomes increase significantly.

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How confident are you with the project forecast?

As every project progresses through it’s lifecycle, the team’s forecast will evolve. The forecast value may move up or down, however, the accuracy of the forecast should always increase. The basis for increasing accuracy is that all estimates are forecasts with some level of uncertainty and as the project progresses the unknowns/uncertainty will decrease. This holds for forecasting any of duration, work effort, or cost.

There are two important concepts in the below figure:

 1)      We see the team’s forecast (solid middle line) moves up and down as time progresses; and,

 2)      the range in value between the High and Low Estimate decreases in steps at each phase.

A key action for the Project Manager is to communicate to all stakeholders that early estimates have higher uncertainty. As part of communication with management and finance stakeholders, I usually ask for a reserve to be added onto my estimates based on the higher uncertainty of estimates and potential negative impact of risks. This amount can be progressively reduced and “given back” as the project progresses over time.

Some types of projects inherently have high uncertainty during initiation and planning. For example, integration of custom software. When faced with projects involving high level of unknown, the Project Manger should use “Three-Point Estimating”. This technique will include the full range of possible values of the estimate and reduces bias that can lead to a highly optimistic or pessimistic estimate.

I usually create custom fields within Microsoft Project 2010 to capture and calculate the three point estimates. The approach is also called PERT. The formula is PERT Estimate = (Optimistic Estimate + 4 X Most Likely Estimate + Pessimistic Estimate) / 6.

 Other project teams that work on a high number of similar projects will develop good enterprise knowledge for making estimates. An example would be an energy and gas company that knows 2 resources can lay pipe at 20 metres per hour and the material cost is $150 dollars per foot. Estimates in these situations can be very accurate, from an early stage.

A Project Manager may have little control of the level of uncertainty or risk when handed a new assignment. However, appropriate application of the concepts above will lead to successfully managing and quantifying estimates of duration, effort, and cost.

 www.IntegrationProfessionals.com