Are You Struggling To Get A Grasp On Your Project?

I will start this post with a warning . . . this article focuses on project management!

Now that I have given you “fair warning,” how many project or portfolio managers struggle to get a grasp on the key indicators for their projects? These indicators give advance warning of pending problems or a heads up on an opportunity that you don’t want to miss.

There is so much information coming from so many directions it can be confusing and overwhelming. Yet we all know that if we don’t understand where our projects are at, it is next to impossible to finish them successfully!

While I was a business executive running a large engineering company, I sat through countless project reviews in many different countries all over the world. Through the experience I gained in these reviews, I was able to develop a one-page  summary that succinctly shows the status of a project.

For the purposes of this post, I will call it the Financial Update Tool. However, this report goes so much deeper than a financial report. The finances can be a gateway into the rest of the project so this report must be coupled with “common project sense” to drill down and ask some tough operational questions. See this post for more details on great questions for your projects.

So what does the Financial Update Tool look like?

Is Your Business More Like a Lamborghini or a Lada?

A Lada may get you from point A to point B (if you are lucky), but a Lamborghini is a highly tuned engineering marvel! Not only will it get you from point A to point B, it will do it quickly, efficiently, and in style! It is a thing of beauty!

Just like a Lamborghini, a finely tuned, high performance business is a beautiful thing!

Understanding what to monitor in your business to ensure that it is finely tuned and highly performing is not an easy task. As you can imagine, there are as many opinions on the definition of high performance as there are businesses. And for good reason.

How to “Freee” Up Your Time and Make More Money

Those who know me, know that I always look for ways to optimize everything! I want to find the most effective and efficient way to get things done while saving time and making money. From automating tasks and eliminating unnecessary activities to outsourcing work that I don’t need to be doing.

This was kicked up to a whole new level when Timothy Ferriss published The 4 Hour Workweek in 2007. I found his way of thinking outside the box to be quite inspiring. The timing of his book was also impeccable as it coincided with the massive economic downturn and recession, creating urgency for businesses to become more cost effective.

My First VA Experience

In 2008, I took over as the business leader of a large engineering company in Calgary. We were in the depth of the “great recession” and the business had been losing a lot of money. In fact, they had just laid off over a third of their staff – the first lay-offs in their 35 year history!

How to Improve Your Projects with 25 Simple Questions

As I wrote in a post a few years ago, project management is not for the faint of heart! Projects can be very complex and stressful.

Besides managing scope, schedule, and budget, project managers need to manage relationships with staff, customers, contractors, vendors, community leaders, and many others. Much of this project management is now done virtually as the project team, contractors and customers can be spread in multiple locations over multiple time zones, cultures and languages.

This is a daunting task!

Even more daunting is the task of a person responsible for the oversight of multiple projects. How can one person possibly stay on top of all the details from multiple large projects?

The answer is that they cannot and they should not even try!

So, what can a leader who is responsible for oversight of multiple large projects do to ensure the projects are on track and delivered successfully?

How to Make Your Business Stand Out

I recently attended a keynote from Claire Diaz-Ortiz. Diaz-Ortiz is an author, speaker, founder of the non-profit “Hope Runs”, ex-executive at Twitter, voted one of Fast Company’s “100 Most Creative People in Business” and is known as “The Woman Who Got the Pope on Twitter!”

Besides being articulate, intelligent, and successful in the business world, she has a very compelling personal story that she is able to effectively weave in with the business side of her life.

So, when she defines a system to make you and your business stand out, we should listen!

Her keynote outlined the framework for this system that she uses to help her and her organizations standout in the marketplace.

She calls the system “SHARE.”

S.H.A.R.E.

Diaz-Ortiz’s framework for how stand out is built around the acronym SHARE. I have briefly summarized the components below.