43 Learning Resources for New and Experienced Project Managers

November 3, 2017 by Sam SauerSam Sauer

We’re entering that slow time of year for businesses. Unless you work in the retail or hospitality industries, November and December usually bring a quiet calm to the office. Clients go on vacation. Emails go from a torrent to a trickle. Desks are cleaned and reorganized.

And that’s why the end of the year is the perfect time to brush up on your skills.

To help you end the year on a strong note, we’ve put together this list of training resources. Because project management is such a multifaceted role that works with many different stakeholders, we’ve included both PM and non-PM resources. These resources range from free to thousands of dollars. The time investment also ranges from a few minutes each day to several months.

We’ve broken this list into five sections:

Results Without Authority: Controlling a Project When the Team Doesn’t Report to You by Tom Kendrick

It’s hard enough to lead a project when you’re the boss. Leading a project team that doesn’t report to you is a whole new challenge in itself. Kendrick walks through how to motivate a team to contribute to a project’s success.

Alpha Project Managers: What the Top 2% Know That Everyone Else Does Not by Andy Crowe

Using data from a survey of more than 800 project managers from around the world, Crowe looks at what traits and practices make the top 2 percent of project managers rise above the rest. Readers will walk away with actionable steps they can take to rise to the top.

Delivering Bad News in Good Ways: Turn Difficult Conversations into Purposeful Dialogue, Positive Outcomes, & Focused Results in 3 Easy Steps by Alison Sigmon

While there are a lot of books out there about the proper ways to deliver bad news, this one is directed at project managers. Sigmon gives project managers a defined process to not only break bad news, but also improve communication over the long-term.

Project Management for the Unofficial Project Manager by Kory Kogen

Are you expected to organize and lead projects without any formal training to draw from? You’re not alone. More and more of us are being asked to PM. This book helps build a foundation, walking through the essentials of people and project management.

Making Things Happen: Mastering Project Management by Scott Berkun

Drawing from his years leading technology projects at Microsoft, Berkun offers readers field-tested philosophies and strategies for defining, leading, and managing projects. If you’re leading technology projects, this is a must-read.

Adaptive Project Management: Leading Complex and Uncertain Projects by Andy Silber

Silber presents a new methodology, Adaptive Project Management, in this book. He explains how to succeed or fail fast for projects that are too uncertain to use waterfall project management and too complex to succeed with agile project management.

The Effective Executive: The Definitive Guide to Getting the Right Things Done by Peter F. Drucker

An oldie but a goodie. Don’t let the title dissuade you from reading. Drucker’s lessons about time management, prioritization, and effective decision-making can be applied to any knowledge worker.

Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity by David Allen

The book that started it all; this is the definitive guide to GTD. In the age of multitasking and information overload, Getting Things Done is the book we need to find focus.

Principles: Life and Work by Ray Dalio.

Over 592 pages, the hedge fund titan Ray Dalio explains the principles that have led to the success of his firm Bridgewater Associates. The book reads partly like a memoir, partly like an instruction manual for life.

The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right by Atul Gawande

Gawande, a renowned surgeon and New Yorker writer, is a proponent of the simple checklist. At first glance, the subject matter sounds like it could be just another dry how-to book, but Gawande’s anecdotes and writing skills take this one...

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