projects, personas, stakeholders, death star, slides

Projects, Personas, and Stakeholders – the slides

Projects have stakeholders, that much is clear, these pesky project stakeholders influence the project in both positive and negative ways. As a project moves towards completion, such as the Death Star, that all-universe symbol of … well, that is an interesting point. There are a lot of stakeholders across the Death Star with very different views of the same project, stakeholders: The Empire, The Rebels, and The contractors … [did you think of them?] Every view into a project is filtered through one lens: WIIFM? (What’s In It For Me?). When I look deeper into stakeholders with a persona lens I gain empathy for the persona motivation through the project and post-project on to the end-user need. This week I had a fortunate invitation to the  Project Management Institute MassBay roundtable to discuss Projects, Personas, and Stakeholders. Here is the deck and resources shared …

Fast Start, conversation

Fast Start — Bias Gets a Bad Rap

Fast Start conversation: Bias, an outlook or tendency to prejudge something, is usually attacked in organizations who aim to create an inclusive, equal-opportunity environment. Sounds noble. Not likely to happen though, as even the most open-minded person is subject to bias.  There is a reason we have bias:  it helped our survival. In this Diversity Executive article, Bias Gets a Bad Rap, Mike Prokopeak looks at being mindful of bias and managing bias as the more likely alternative to rooting it out.  Why? Because bias is neither good nor bad: Bias is about me. Bias is about them. Bias is about us. Seems this is a function of being human. So, how do we reinforce our differences and work better with each other? How do we get to the point where our organizations make it comfortable that when we try to understand the …

Led Zeppelin, project management, communication, template, Toby Elwin, blog

Scope or: how to manage projects for organization success; communication template

Project communication is far bigger than the project team. No project succeeds without stakeholder motivation and a proper communication plan to address their motivations, needs, and goals. Project communication is an effort to build commitment, understanding, and ownership around the project impact to people, process, and technology.

This template provides a planning tool to meet stakeholder communication needs. With this you can plan what to communicate, when to communicate, how to communicate, and measure communication performance.

Toby Elwin, 2011, top blog, competing values

Top 10 blog posts for 2011, 10 to 6

Closing out 2011, I look back at the year’s most viewed posts as a chance to reflect on topics I blog about people view most. Why were some viewed over others:  topic, time-of-year, day-of-week? In descending order: 10. Competing values drives your organization out of business — A 2009 blog about organization culture’s impact on change and what happens when organizations who can not identify or manage culture get stuck, become irrelevant, and vanish.  This blog talks about a culture identification tool called the Competing Values Framework and has a follow-up blog The cost of culture, a 50% turnover of the Fortune 500 that appears in 2011’s top 5. 9.  4 Tips to use Twitter for project management — Written in January, 2010 this blog seems to have hit a note.  This was 1 of 2 blogs eventually highlighted on …

Leap in the Dark, book, cover, Toby Elwin, blog

Recently finished book — A Leap in the Dark

Any talk about change management must start with stakeholder alignment. Quick on any change-rule-heels: risk identification. History provides truly great examples of change challenges and few, in my mind, resonate greater change management challenges than The American Revolution. The players: 13 colonies and their self-interests, as well as the class war within each colony; France, Spain, Great Britain; Native American Indians; commerce; and government as a few dynamics. If you think your enterprise has politics, reflect on some of the larger historical pivot points and the politics, people politics, involved. First rule of change: creating a compelling future-state. Well, the birth of the American Republic blows that change management keystone theory for a loop. I find that I go back to reread chapters with a change management hat on and try to keep track of the players, both the positive …

Recap: Scope or: how to manage projects for organization success

A recap on my series of six blogs around project scope.  Includes links to slide deck and customizable templates: 1 of 6 —  Scope or:  How to manage projects for organization success, part 1 The ability to deliver a project is the ability to compete. Scope kills projects and projects that are not delivered kill organizations. Scope is one of the most important ways to manage project success. And when projects succeed, organizations succeed. 2 of 6 — Scope or:  How to manage projects for organization success, part 2 The key for organizations to grow and to thrive relies on how to manage projects and how to manage projects for organization success becomes an industry competitive advantage. But why do so many projects fail? 3 of 6 — Scope or:  How to manage projects for organization success; impact analysis template An impact analysis unearths …

van helsing, stakeholder, analysis, template, Toby Elwin, blog

Scope or: how to manage projects for organization success; stakeholder analysis template

A stakeholder is anyone, or group, who can positively or negatively affect the outcome of the project. This posts introduces two Excel template worksheets for stakeholder identification and management.

Prior to a project’s go-ahead this template identifies groups and individuals with a stake in the success, and failure.

The effort makes sure we understand the key concerns and motivations of these audiences in order to mitigate risk to over-look or under-appreciate stakeholder position.

butterfly effect, Toby Elwin, blog

Organization sabotage and the butterfly effect

To run a team, manage a group, or lead an organization means you line people up yell, “ready, steady, go” and we folk hum along without need, guidance, motivation, communication, or care for anyone but the organization.

The reason a professional might call for an organization intervention comes from the feeling of organization sabotage.

Something is wrong.

Someones needs help.

We need to intervene.

project, human capital, Toby Elwin, blog, fellowship, team

All projects are human capital projects

All the projects underway across your company share one, elemental risk: all projects across your company are human capital projects. The valuation of a company usually involves four areas: Physical capital, Financial capital, Intellectual capital, and Human capital Valuation is a combination of science, art, and voodoo (Enron anyone???). Voodoo aside, when I recast these valuations from a new angle, I see each, relies, in their entirety, on people: Physical capital – people are trained to use, maximize, and maintain machines Financial capital – people manage, buy, sell, and negotiate Intellectual capital – people research (question/challenge) and invent Human capital – people and their knowledge, skill, and abilities contribute individually and collectively as part of a company’s social network If people are the lever for a company’s value, no amount of their knowledge, skills, and abilities will matter without their motivation. When 70% …

In review: Leaders and fishing

May 2009 in review.  A roundup of blogs from the previous month: Leaders and fishing — Leaders craft the vision and convey how to embark on a course from what is to what could be.  Leaders must rely on their managers to manage, but leaders need to roll their sleeves up and steward the message far into and across the organization themselves. Culture war — The people who don’t fit your culture are the people who keep your business and your team sharp, they aim beyond the horizon, challenge the status quo, drive new conversation, and stimulate cognitive diversity.  Recruiting for culture fit may be an organization risk. What can a 5 year old teach you about leadership? — People are insightful and quickly see through words not followed with action. Organizations who hang core value posters without backing up all …

buy in, change management, Toby Elwin, blog

Buy-in is broke

In organization change I always avoid any effort that includes the term:  buy-in. You may hear the term in some variation of the following: “now we need to get (insert stakeholder here) to buy-in“. I have never been comfortable asking anyone to buy-in to a strategic plan, a new product launch, or an organization change. Buy-in sounds too much like slippery salesman’s jargon. I don’t need the person or the team or the organization to buy-in and because then there is a risk they may feel something bogus was sold to them.  I don’t need surprises or revised sales job to get move my message. Don’t ask people to buy-in to something. Instead invite them in to what is happening. Communicate with them. Draw them in. Share with all those impacted difficulty ahead you see ahead.  Ask them for their view.  Ask them …