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Project Management Best Practices

  • Dear Elizabeth: Advice Column for Project Managers

    Dear Elizabeth: Advice Column for Project Managers

    Dear Elizabeth:  I work on a project team for a manufacturing company. For the last year we’ve been using ranged estimates to build out our schedules. For the most part our customers love it. We...

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  • 10 Ways Project Management Software Can Improve Your Career

    10 Ways Project Management Software Can Improve Your Career

    If you use project management software and think of it as just that tool you use to do your planning, then you’re really missing out. Because this everyday tool can enhance your career in a number...

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  • How to Motivate Your Team to Track Time

    How to Motivate Your Team to Track Time

    Does your team groan when you they hear the words “track time”? Is it an activity that everyone on your team tends to duck and dodge and you’re on a repeat loop every week reminding people do fill...

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  • Dear Elizabeth: Managing Client Feedback and Making Deadlines

    Dear Elizabeth: Managing Client Feedback and Making Deadlines

    Dear Elizabeth: I’m project managing 100 projects (seriously), and struggling. The main thing is deadlines – we have a fixed project deadline, but it’s largely in the control of our customers as...

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  • The Project Manager’s Guide to Managing Job Stress

    The Project Manager’s Guide to Managing Job Stress

    You probably know about some of the negative impacts of stress—on your health, on your relationships, on your career. But here’s an angle that few of us speaks about in the world of project...

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  • The Day I Gave Up Updating the Project Schedule: A Story

    The Day I Gave Up Updating the Project Schedule: A Story

    I remember the day I gave up maintaining the project schedule. It all took place a few years ago at a little Thai food restaurant in Dearborn, Michigan. The best Thai food place in Metro Detroit...

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  • 3 Ways to Improve Work Relationships Using Project Management Tools

    3 Ways to Improve Work Relationships Using Project Management Tools

    It’s easy to think of project management software as the tool you use to take care of business. It’s what you use for logging, tracking and monitoring. You use it for scheduling, budgeting and...

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  • Your Project Budget Just Got Slashed, Now What? How to Do More With Less

    Your Project Budget Just Got Slashed, Now What? How to Do More With Less

    In the mid-90s, I managed a project for a utility company that included a team of 20+ people. I have always liked to start my workday early, and one particular Friday, I was already hard at work...

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  • Dear Elizabeth: Advice Column for Project Managers

    Dear Elizabeth: Advice Column for Project Managers

    Dear Elizabeth: I have a boss who makes a habit of overcommitting my team to projects that require more resources than I have and deadlines that aren’t reasonable. I’m always told to just “make it...

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  • Why You Should Use Predictive Scheduling for Your Projects

    Why You Should Use Predictive Scheduling for Your Projects

    I had a hallway conversation with my colleague about the best way to manage a project schedule. My colleague admitted to developing a pretty Gantt chart at the beginning of the project because...

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  • Dear Elizabeth: Advice Column for Project Managers

    Dear Elizabeth: Advice Column for Project Managers

    In case you missed it last month, we started a monthly advice column that addresses the hard and tricky business of managing projects. Our advice-giver is one of the best PM coaches and...

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  • The Top 5 Frustrations for Project Managers—and How to Solve Them

    The Top 5 Frustrations for Project Managers—and How to Solve Them

    What are your top project management frustrations? I often hear “my business customers,” because that’s usually what the work is connected to, and making customers happy can be frustrating....

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  • 6 Tips to Manage a Demanding Workload

    6 Tips to Manage a Demanding Workload

    Here’s a common pain point that I see in my project management coaching practice: project managers with an overwhelming workload who are unsure how to turn the situation around. The overload...

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  • Why Do Projects Fail?

    Why Do Projects Fail?

    Why do projects fail? We all wish there was a simple answer to this question, but there isn’t. Anyone suggesting there is, doesn’t understand the complexities of non-trivial projects in any...

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  • 3 Best Practices for Managing Ad Hoc Projects

    3 Best Practices for Managing Ad Hoc Projects

    In mainstream project management, you typically strive for a recurring set of tools and workflows: the scope statement, the work-breakdown-structure, the financial analysis, time and cost...

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  • 5 Reasons Why Using Spreadsheets is a Horrible Way to Manage Projects

    5 Reasons Why Using Spreadsheets is a Horrible Way to Manage Projects

    Once in my career, I was lucky enough to work with a true Excel spreadsheet master. Chris could make Excel do anything, except he never used spreadsheets to manage a project. He was a wise man....

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  • Will a Project Management Certification Help Your Career?

    Will a Project Management Certification Help Your Career?

    Let’s say you’re well-qualified in your technical skills—be it Java, programming languages, infrastructure, networks or system administration. Qualifications take time and effort, but as well as...

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  • What Do You Do When Your Project Stalls?

    What Do You Do When Your Project Stalls?

    I remember when our technology and consulting company started a project to develop a system for automating a key process for one of our biggest clients. This system was going to save our client a...

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  • Dear Elizabeth: Leading Meetings and Streamlined Reporting

    Dear Elizabeth: Leading Meetings and Streamlined Reporting

    Dear Elizabeth:  What’s the best way to open a meeting? I just started leading a project team and I often feel awkward at the very beginning of our weekly meeting, especially since I’m trying to...

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  • How to Execute Projects That Deliver Results: 3 Strategies

    How to Execute Projects That Deliver Results: 3 Strategies

    Anyone familiar with the saying, “The best laid plans of mice and men,” also realizes that no matter how well you prepare, your efforts can easily go off the rails without focused attention and...

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