Social Intelligence – The Critical Ingredient to Project Success – Part One

Delivering projects is a human activity. Generating something new from ‘thin air’ requires groups of people who are able to conceive, plan and then execute a series of complicated activities that will, in some form or other, enhance the lives of other human beings. Large projects require the input of many highly specialised skills, which [...]

Stakeholder support – Managing the Cycle of Doubt

Most projects begin with a high level of support from a number of key stakeholders. These are the people who have approved the resources or have a need for the project to succeed. As the project proceeds, conditions change and early assumptions often prove to be incorrect. If the program extends and costs start to [...]

Blame Instinct

Last week I spent some time with a team who were setting out their rules of engagement for a new project that was about to start. They were quite enthusiastic about the need to establish a No Blame Culture in the team. I pointed out to them that whilst a no blame culture was an [...]

A book that might change how you lead a team

I have just finished reading a great new book titled the Culture Code by Daniel Coyle. I would say this is a 'must read' for anyone who wants to build, manage or coach a resilient team. The book has a marvellously simple structure based on three key insights; That teams work most effectively when their [...]

‘Should I stay or should I go?’ – Breaking the ties that bind us to the wrong job

Last night I had a rerun of a conversation I have had a number of times before. I was talking to a man who revealed he was unhappy with his current employer, but felt unsure about moving on. He had been with his firm for over 15 years and through expansion, merger and take over, [...]

The secret life of teams

The secret life of teams: Why your team may be dysfunctional and what you can do about it. Do you enjoy your work? The answer to this question will be significantly influenced by your relationships with the other human beings at work around you. Organisations are typically structured into functional and operational groups, which are [...]

Phase Zero – A Better Approach To Team Building.

Phase Zero - A Better Approach To Team Building. It is not a new idea that people who habitually work on projects need to bond personally and professionally to build an effective working relationship. The idea of team building is well understood, and yet my research indicates that most projects pay little more than lip [...]

How to handle curveballs.

How to handle curveballs. What to do about clients who demand the impossible when you least expect it. It’s Wednesday morning. Your current project is running slightly behind schedule but you feel you’re just about on top of it. Then out of the ether you receive an email from your client or project sponsor, asking [...]

Is your project complex or just complicated?

Is your project complex or just complicated? Organisations use projects to institute change. The challenge of the modern world is that the pressures that have created the need to change will also impact upon the way that the project is managed. Large organisations with multiple stakeholders, compressed timescales and constrained budgets are just some of the [...]

Systemic thinking as a mechanism for managing risks arising from behavioural complexity on major projects.

Systemic thinking as a mechanism for managing risks arising from behavioural complexity on major projects. As projects become more complex there is a greater expectation on the project manager to resolve a new set of challenges that move beyond the technical delivery of task completion. As project leader, you must now become more skilled in [...]