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Archive for September, 2010

The presentation (PPT-file) is now available online at http://congresses.pmi.org/NorthAmerica2010/documents/PMT10-ppt.pdf. Feedback is highly welcome!

If you are attending the PMI Global Congress in DC next week, please stop by.  Reading a ppt-file is still different from attending an actual session.  Besides some slides will be different from those available online at this time.  Yet another reason to attend.

Looking forward to seeing and talking with you in DC.
Thomas

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A couple of years ago I came across the bestselling book “The Instant Millionaire:  A Tale of Wisdom and Wealth” by Mark Fisher.  I openly admit that when I first heard about this book the title itself was most appealing.  Reading the subtitle, it confirmed my interest.  And it was a good buy.  No, it was an excellent purchase.

This book is not primarily about how you can optimize your financial situation.  You can certainly read it from this perspective.  But you may miss the most important element, the core of the book.  The book is a tale of wisdom and wealth.  It is about pursuing your goals in life.  And it is about having the right attitude towards yourself, your goals and your environment.

Let me share some  quotes which give you a better idea about the thrust of the content:

  • Be expansive and positive in your thoughts
  • Never lose happiness
  • Be courageous enough to act immediately
  • Don’t lose your perspective
  • Be precise in your desires
  • Don’t fight against your problems. The clouds will disappear

Now compare these insights to, say, a project you are about to set up, manage, rescue or re-align.  What you need to start is a vision. You need to have a direction or else the project will not take off into the right direction. Spend the necessary time to build this vision – with your team.  Share your excitement, talk about the challenges you have identified and how you can master them, be precise in what you want to achieve.  And – never lose happiness, i.e., enjoy the process, have fun.

This book is excellent from many perspectives.  I highly recommend it.

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Recently I attended a management meeting in which the roadmap of an organization was outlined.  While the actual roadmap was convincing the presentation of the same was dismal and anything but convincing.  What went wrong?  –  The presenter’s favorite terms were “I have accomplished such and such”, “I led …”, “I know …” and “the most important thing for me is that we make money”.  Rarely if ever the presenter talked about the effort and accomplishments of a team or satisfying the clients of the organization.  Did and does this make a difference?  You bet.  It was a  presentation delivered top-down.  It served the one purpose of sharing information.  It failed in celebrating the past successes with the team and creating excitement about the road ahead.  This was really unfortunate.  Not surprisingly the presenter lost the attention and involvement of the audience after about 10-15 minutes into the presentation.

Regarding the second downfall of putting profits over customers, it was a shocking experience.  This was especially so because we were talking about an organization where customer interaction is key to business success.

Lessons learned:
(1) As much as you in your leadership role may have contributed to the success of your organization, never forget that it takes a team to deliver results.  A leader without a team is worth nothing.
(2) When you work for a client serving organization know your maxim of satisfying your customers.  It is not about maximizing profits; it is about customer satisfaction.  As much as profits are important for business, there will be no profits if you cannot satisfy your customers.

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